The best way to enjoy strawberries

Published 5:33 pm Tuesday, August 2, 2011

The ancient Romans believed that strawberries alleviated symptoms of melancholy, fainting, all inflammations, fevers, throat infections, kidney stones, bad breath, attacks of gout, and diseases of the blood, liver and spleen.

To symbolize perfection and righteousness, medieval stone masons carved strawberry designs on altars and around the tops of pillars in churches and cathedrals.

I love strawberries and this recipe well, takes the cake! You’ll love every moist and berry filled layer.

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You’ll have your guest coming back for more, if there’s any left!

Strawberry Layer Cake

For the cake:

1 (18.5 oz.) box white cake mix (without pudding)

1 (3 oz.) package strawberry Jell-O

1 Tbs. self-rising flour

4 tsp. granulated sugar

3/4 cup vegetable oil

4 eggs

1/2 cup water

1/2 of a 10-oz. package of frozen strawberries, thawed and well-drained (reserving all the juice and the remaining berries)

For strawberry frosting:

Reserved strawberries and juice, above

2 (1 lb.) boxes confectioners’ sugar, sifted

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter

Red food coloring (optional)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and lightly flour three 8-inch round cake pans. Set them aside. To make the cake, combine the cake mix, Jell-O, flour and sugar in a large bowl. Mix well. Add the oil.

Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the water and the half package of strawberries to this mixture. Mix well. Divide the batter evenly into the prepared pans.

Bake for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of each layer comes out clean and the layers pull away from the sides of the pans.

Transfer the layers from the oven to wire racks.

Let them cool, still in their pans, for 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, run a knife around the inside edge of each pan, then unmold each layer onto the racks to cool completely.

To make the frosting, in a bowl, combine the remaining strawberries and the reserved juice with the confectioners’ sugar and the butter.

Beat with a mixer (or mash by hand) until smooth and well blended.

Transfer the cake layers, one at a time, onto a serving platter. Frost between each layer, on top of the cake and around the sides with frosting.

Take some extra strawberries and use them to decorate the top. Leave them whole or take a knife and fan them out.

This is perfect served alone or with a big scoop of homemade vanilla ice cream.