Sweet Treat of the Week: Unbirthday Cake

I have a bit of buttermilk in the refrigerator that is quickly reaching its time of expiration so I pulled out my favorite Southern Living cake book for some inspiration to use it up.  (No food left behind, right?)  I chose to make a simple cake for which I had all the ingredients on hand.  It's simply called "The Celebration Cake".  In this case, since our cake was not truly a celebration cake, I left the cake in the pan I baked it in and frosted just the top. It's the lazy-woman's way to decorate a cake--what, are you gonna call the food police on me?  But again, the cake wasn't for an actual occasion. Truthfully, it was purely a way to avoid throwing out the remainder of my buttermilk! And I say when life hands you buttermilk, you'd better bake a cake!

Since the cake is for "celebrations", I decided to make it a "merry unbirthday" cake for my husband.  Hey, we all like to feel special every now and then, right?  Why should that only happen on our birthdays?

If you have never made a cake from scratch before, this is a pretty straightforward and fool-proof one to make!

Southern Living's Celebration Cake
Prep: 25 min., Bake: 35 min., Cool: 55 min.
Yield: Makes 24 servings (In my house, it's more like 12 servings!)

2 cups sugar
1 cup butter
2 large eggs
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups cake flour*
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk

Cream Cheese Frosting**


1. Beat sugar and butter at medium speed with an electric mixer until creamy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until yellow disappears after each addition. Beat in lemon juice and vanilla.

2. Combine flour and baking soda in a small bowl; add to sugar mixture alternately with buttermilk, beginning and ending with flour mixture. Beat at medium speed just until blended after each addition. Pour batter into a greased and floured 13- x 9-inch pan.

3. Bake at 350° for 30 to 35 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pan on a wire rack 10 minutes. Remove cake from pan to wire rack, and cool 45 minutes or until completely cool. Place cake on a serving platter (or leave it in the pan if you're being a lazy bum like me!). Frost as desired.

*If you don't have cake flour in your pantry, don't fear!  You can make some with this simple hint:
For each cup of cake flour use 7/8 cup all-purpose flour (1 cup minus 2 tablespoons) PLUS 2 tablespoons of corn starch. The addition of corn starch helps to make cakes light and tender.

**Use whatever recipe you like.  The way I make it is basically a ratio- 1 8 oz. brick of cream cheese, 1 stick of butter and 3.5 cups of powdered sugar.  If you're making a layer cake, just double the ingredients.  Or triple, if you like a lot of frosting.  I won't judge you!

...and a very merry unbirthday to you!

Edited: After reading this post, my mom shared a tip she read about freezing buttermilk (and bananas).  Genius!


  1. Does that mean I un-birthed him?

  2. I just called the food police on you.

    Beautiful cake! Sounds and looks so yummy.


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