“When Life hands you Limes, grab a bottle of Tequila & Salt”
This is not just a quote to me; this is my motto of life. Or you can say it’s the resolution for this year and it was always there in all these past years. I follow a simple life filled with small details and happiness on daily doses. So I simply cut down the complicated inner meaning of the quote and took the literal meaning very seriously. As a result my pantry is well stocked with tequila and whisky, always! I may not have a bread to feed you in odd time but I must have a bottle of tequila to serve you, anytime you want. Hey, hang on! Right now I have Margarita Wedding Cake with Tequila & Lime to feed you too! How cool is that?
Sadly right now I only have the recipe and some quick clicks of this Margarita Wedding Cake with Tequila & Lime as the original cake is long gone. Damn! I must have baked another one for myself; sigh! I think I need a tequila shot or a large glass full of margarita to gulp down the sorrow, right now!
By now most of you must have figured out the fact from my restaurant reviews that my love for scotch and tequila is unconditional and next to heaven, not if beyond! If scotch would be my legal husband then tequila would take the place of my secret lover. If I’m not in position to let my hair down on scotch I always find my sunshine in margaritas.
Okay (I admit), got carried away with my boozy nonsense; let’s take the focus back on the Tequila Lime Cake. This huge cake was my first ever wedding cake which I had actually prepared on order for a friend. The couple, who had ordered this, wasn’t any regular couple; they were very special. The guy wanted a sweet frosting covered cake but the girl wanted a boozy party with a boozy cake, only if the cake is so necessary. And my inner devil took the complete liberty of the situation as I wanted to bake something with my favorite alcohols for a long time. After loads of discussion we ended up on the Margarita Cake with (lots of) Tequila & Lime.
This Tequila & Lime Cake has boozy lemon sponges with tequila as the base which were soaked in boozy syrup. The frosting and filling is done by whipped cream (instead of buttercream) to keep the cake light and less sweet. I did want to emphasize on the taste and texture of the cake with booze so I kept the frosting simple yet classy. The color of the cake & frosting was maintained in green to match the theme of the wedding, lime & purple orchid. It is the best work I did in the year of 2013; in fact possibly it is the best one I did so far, I guess (yes, the table décor was also mine)!
Here is my elaborate step by step Margarita Wedding Cake with Tequila & Lime recipe for you all.
If you are baking this for a smaller group of people, reduce the amount of the ingredients to half which will make one 8” round cake with two thick layers; around 3” to 4” tall cake.
Preparation Time: 10 mins
Cooking/Active Time: 60 mins
Resting/Inactive time: 240 mins
Total Time: 310 mins
Yield: 15-20 servings
Do make sure all ingredients are at room temperature (unless mentioned) and weighted or measured correctly in appropriate weighing machine or measuring instruments such as cups or spoons. Remember these are not your regular cups or spoons which you use in your daily life.
For the Lemon sponge cakes:
(The measuring are mentioned here will yield two 8” round cakes)
All-purpose flour: 320g or 2½ cup + 1 tbsp (for dusting)
Baking powder: 2½ tsp
Sugar, granulated: 300g or 1½ cup, powdered (See Tips)
Butter: 150g or ¾ cup + 1 tbsp (for greasing) (See Tips)
Egg: 4, large
Tequila: ¼ – ½ cup
Milk: 120ml or ½ cup (See Tips)
Vanilla extract: 2 tsp
Freshly squeezed lime juice: 2 tbsp
Fresh lime zest of 2 limes
Green Food color: 2-3 drops
Sugar, granulated: 100g or ½ cup
Water: 60 ml or ¼
Freshly squeezed lime juice: 2 tbsp
Tequila: ¼ cup
For Frosting & Filling:
Whipping Cream: 1 cup (half & half cream/heavy cream or any dairy free cream will also work fine)
Caster sugar: 1 tbsp
Green Food color: 4-6 drops
Tequila: 3-5 tbsp
You can use similar Green sugar beads and sugar dolls like me or use simple Lime slices
Large mixing bowls
Small mixing bowls
8” Bundt pan
Before starting the prep work, one should keep one thing in mind that this is a delicious cake with quite a lengthy process. So one has to be patient and organized; otherwise entire hard work will end up in a big fat mess.
Always start with baking the sponge cake. In a large bowl sieve and sift flour (reserve 1 tbsp) & baking powder together. Repeat the process one more time. Keep aside until needed. (See Tips)
Extract the lime juice from a fresh lime. Mix the lime juice with the tequila (and drink few shots; it’s always mandatory while you are baking with tequila, you already know that, right!!)
Cream butter (reserve 1 tbsp) and sugar together with electric beater until become fluffy and pale in color. As I used granulated sugar, so my mixture took almost 4-5 mins to blend nicely. It’s always better to take 5 mins out and powder your sugar before you start baking, lesson learned in a hard way!
Add eggs one by one (one at time) and continue beating. Take care not to overbeat.
Add vanilla extract, tequila & lime juice mixture with the lime zest and mix very gently without disturbing the aeration.
Mix 1/3rd portion of the flour mixture into the batter and gently fold with a rubber spatula. When there will be no visibility of flour, pour ½ of the milk into the batter and continue mixing in the same manner. Make sure there is no lump at all. (See Tips)
Repeat the process until all flour and milk are incorporated nicely with the batter.
Add the green food color into the batter and fold gently.
Grease the pan with softened butter and dust the same with reserved flour. Tap off the excess flour. (See Tips)
Fill 2/3 of the pan with the cake batter and tap the pan few times on the kitchen counter. (See Tips)
This cake will be huge with four layers so it needs to be baked for longer period on low temperature, if you are baking two cakes together. It will ensure a nice evenly baked cake without any burning on the top or sides.
Or if you have a small oven like me, bake two cakes separately. Bake each cake in preheated (1600C) oven for 30-40 mins at 1600C; then, lower the temperature to 1400C and bake for another 10 mins (depending on your oven) or until a skewer comes out with clean crumbs when inserted in the middle of the cake. (See Tips)
Remove the cake from oven and set on wire rack to cool down for 10-15 mins. Once it is easy to handle, run a blunt kitchen knife around the side of the pan and gently tap it few times on the kitchen counter to loosen up the sides of the cake. (See Tips)
Let’s start the syrup while cake is cooling.
Combine sugar & water in a small saucepan and heat on medium flame until the sugar dissolves completely. Remove the pan from flame and add tequila & lime juice and stir well. Once the cake is cool enough to handle yet warm, drizzle the syrup on cake with pastry brush.
Repeat the process 2-3 times. Now allow the cakes (inside the pan) to rest on wire rack until cool completely. Brush the cakes with the syrup few more times. Once the cakes come to room temperature, remove the cakes carefully from the pan.
While the cake is soaking the syrup, prepare the whipped cream Frosting and Filling.
Take the cream in a large clean & dry bowl, if there is water/vapor, cream won’t be whipped easily. Now sprinkle the icing sugar on the top of the cream and start whipping with electric/manual whisk until the cream is ready with soft peaks. Add the tequila and continue whisking.
Reserve half of the cream in a separate bowl and continue whisking rest of it until you can spot hard peaks. Again divide the cream in two separate bowls with equal portions and add food colors to achieve a light and a dark green shade. (See Tips)
Now is the tricky part, layering the cake.
Once cakes come to room temperature, cut off the top and level the same. And also cut the cakes in two halves, horizontally. Place few aluminium foil strips on the cake stand in such a way that each strip will have one end hanging out of the stand (see picture below). (See Tips)
Place the bottom layer of a cake on the foil wrapped cake stand and dump 1/3 of the whipped cream with soft peak and spread evenly with spatula. (See Tips)
Place the rest of the layers in the same manner and make a four layered tall tower. Don’t forget to check the alignment correctly otherwise the tower will fall down on the face and your cake will be defeated even before the war 😉
Dump the frosting on the top and the sides to cover the crumbs. Level with spatula to cover the entire cake. Refrigerate the cake for at least 30 mins to move to the next step. (See Tips)
For the final frosting dump the two shades of green frosting on the sides and level them with the spatula. Frosting looks good in either elegantly smooth or rustically rough way. So pick your choice and do it. As it was a wedding cake I tried to give it classic smooth look.
Your cake is good to go like this only. But if you want to decorate it more go ahead and flaunt your creativity. I used green sugar beads and sugar dolls.
Margarita Wedding Cake with Tequila & Limeis all set to rock the party. Make sure to dip the knife in water or wipe out with clean tissue just before slicing the cake and serve immediately. Thus the frosting will be intact with each slice. This cake is huge and perfectly capable to satisfy 15-20 persons. Excess cake can be refrigerated in airtight container. Taste will be good upto 2-3 days.
1. It is okay to add little less sugar than the specified measurement but never add more. If you add less sugar your cake will be puffy and yes little less sweet but that will hardly make any differences if you are having perfect spongy cake with sugar frosting like this. But more sugar not only spoils your taste it will also produce soggy and lumpy cake.
2. I always use regular salted butter but my mother never use salted version.
3. Any other flavored milk or dairy free milk will also work fine.
4. If you are not using any alcohol, increase the amount of lime juice or use lime & lemon juice in 1:1 ratio.
5. Don’t overbeat the butter & sugar.This will yield grainy texture and cake won’t be as fluffy as expected.
6. Don’t pour the flour and milk together it will be hard to mix and also mixture will turn into a lumpy form. It is preferable to maintain the ratio for a smoother result.
7. Greasing and dusting the baking pan will make sure that cake won’t stick to it while baking.
8. Tapping the baking pan with mixture will help to release air bubbles from inside the batter, if any forms. And the batter will be spread evenly in the pan.
9. Keep checking after initial time specified. It may take 10-15 mins more depending on your oven.
10. Sometimes top of the cake gets the perfect brown color but inside still remains jiggy. Don’t worry about it. Cover the top with a heavy duty foil and continue baking for 10-15 mins more. This will prevent the top from over baking or burning while inside of the cake will continue to bake.
11. Don’t touch or try to cut the cake while it is hot. It is damn fragile now. Allow it to cool. Once it is cooled it will be firm.
12. Keep the ganache in clean & dry glass bowl and cover it with cling film until needed. Remember, less air contact means better taste.
13. These foil strips will help to keep the cake stand clean and neat at end part.
14. While spreading the filling between layers, remember to leave ½” on the sides. When the layers will be done, filling will be spread automatically due to pressure.
15. If you are not in hurry it is advisable to refrigerate the cake for 1 hr. It will help to set the entire cake.
16. First allow to set the frosting then go with more garnishing.
And it was a good year, indeed!!!