Edible Viola Vanilla Berry Cake

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For the Cake:
3 cups flour
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks), at room temperature
2 cups granulated sugar
6 large egg whites, at room temperature
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
For the Vanilla Buttercream Frosting, Berry Filling & Garnish:
1 cup butter, softened
4 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 Tablespoons milk, or more if needed
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup raspberries
1/2 cup chopped fresh strawberries

Edible viola, for garnish (safe edible viola can be found at your gourmet market)

1. Make the cake: Place oven rack in center of the oven. Preheat to oven to Bake 350°F. Grease and flour two 8" x 2" or 9" x 2" round pans, or line the pans with parchment circles, then grease the parchment.

2. In a large bowl, mix together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.

3. In another bowl, cream the butter and sugar until it’s light and fluffy, about 2 minutes.

4. Slowly add the egg whites into the butter mixture, beating until evenly combined. Stir in the vanilla.

5. Gradually mix in flour mixture into the creamed mixture until just combined. Slowly stir in the milk until smooth, occasionally scraping the sides of the bowl.

6. Pour the batter evenly into the two prepared pans and bake them for 22-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the cakes cool for about 10 minutes, then carefully remove the cakes and let them finish cooling on wire racks.

7. Make the Frosting: In large mixing bowl, beat together the butter, powdered sugar, vanilla, milk, and salt until fluffy and smooth.

8. If buttercream frosting is too dry, add additional tablespoon of milk as needed.

9. Assemble the Cake: If needed, trim the top off the baked cake layers to create flat surfaces. Place one cake layer on a serving platter or stand. Spread a thin layer of frosting on top, and then top with the raspberries and chopped strawberries.

10. Place the next cake layer on top and spread a very thin layer of frosting over the sides and top of the cake. Refrigerate for 15 minutes, or until firm.

11. Frost the sides and top of the cake with the remaining frosting. Garnish with the edible viola flowers. The cake is best served at room temperature (your Thermador wine column’s Presenter’s Shelf is a perfect place to keep the cake delicately chilled until close to serving time).