One of my favorite things in the world is cake.
Being inside a bakeshop makes me giddy. The sight of lovely cakes on glass shelves makes me swoon. So, it is not surprising that baking cakes makes my heart jump in anticipation of what is about to come out of the oven.
And of all cakes out there, Tres Leches cake has got to be my favorite. It is my favorite cake to consume and to make.
Tres leches cake is unique in every way. It is made of a simple sponge cake yet what makes it so special is the delightful milk mixture that is absorbed by the light and airy crumbs of the sponge.
You basically pour a mixture of milk into the cake and let it seep through the delicate crumbs, making the cake moist and heavenly.
Three types of milk in a cake, sealed with whipped cream on top, this cake is simply divine. I remember baking this cake twice in a week. If you don’t call that serious affinity, I don’t know what that is.
Tres Leches Cake: The Process
The Sponge Cake
Making the sponge cake couldn’t be more simple. With only 4 ingredients, you can whip it up without fuss.
- 6 large eggs at room temperature
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
Preheat oven to 350 F. In the bowl of stand mixer, beat the eggs for about 1 minute on high speed. Gradually add 1 cup of sugar and continue to beat the eggs for 8-10 minutes. The resulting mixture should be thick and pale, and it has also tripled in volume.
One way to test if the eggs are ready is to lift the beater from the mixture or use a spatula to scoop up a little amount of the batter. The batter should fall back to to the surface forming ribbon figures that do not sink in right away.
Combine the flour and the baking powder. Sift the powders over the batter 1/3 of the amount at a time.Use a rubber spatula and gently fold the powders into the egg batter after each addition. Do several scooping motions going from under the batter then up the surface until there is no streak of flour visible.
Divide batter between two 9 -inch round pans that are lined with parchment paper. Bake the sponge cakes at 350 F for 23-25 minutes or until lightly golden.
Let cool on wire racks until warm and remove from the pan to cool completely.
The Milk Mixture and Assembly
In a container with a spout, combine 1 cup of whipping cream, 1 cup of condensed milk and 1 can of evaporated milk. Stir mixture to combine thoroughly.
Lay one of the sponge cakes on a rimmed serving plate. Use the tines of a fork to poke holes all over the surface the cake.
Slowly pour half of the milk mixture on the cake surface, stopping every now and then to let the milk be absorbed first before pouring some more.
Let the cake stand until most of the milk is absorbed. Meanwhile, make the whipped cream. In a bowl of the stand mixer, beat heavy cream with icing sugar until stiff peaks are formed. Pour in a container, cover and refrigerate until needed.
Once most the liquid is absorbed by the cake, spread 1/3 of the whipped cream on top of the first layer of cake.
Lay the second layer on top and poke holes all over the surface again using the tines of a fork. Pour the remaining half of the mixture over the second layer, stopping once in a while to let the cake absorb the liquid first.
Let cake stand until no milk mixture is sitting on the surface of the cake.
(Note that it is fine to have a small amount of milk sitting on the base of the cake. You want the surface of the cake to be free of any sitting liquid, though, so you can frost the cake with ease.)
Spread the whipped cream on top and sides of the cake, icing it completely. Top the cake with cherries.
Finally, serve yourself a slice and enjoy every bite of heaven.
Want more cakes? Also, try these recipes:
- Ovaltine Cake with Whipped Cream Icing
- Pineapple Chiffon Cake
- Ube Chiffon Cake
- Pandan Chiffon Cake
- Mango Cake Roll
- Mocha Cake Roll
- Chocolate Cake with Whipped Chocolate Cream Icing
Tres Leches Cake
Tres Leches Cake is a heavenly indulgent cake that is soaked in three types of milk. Very moist, delicate and creamy this a perfect dessert after a nice hearty meal.
For the sponge cake
- 6 large eggs
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder
For the Milk Mixture to Soak the Sponge Cake:
- 1 can evaporated milk
- 1 cup condensed milk
- 1 cup heavy cream
For the whipped cream icing
- 1 and 3/4 cups heavy whipping cream
- 2-3 tbsp icing sugar
- 1 cup maraschino cherries for toppings
For the sponge cake:
Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease the bottom of two 9- inch round pans and line with parchment paper. Do not grease the sides.
In a bowl of stand mixer, beat 6 large eggs using high speed for one minute. With the mixer still on, gradually add 1 cup of sugar and continue beating until the eggs are thick, pale and fluffy. This should take about 8-10 minutes.
To test if the eggs are ready, lift the beater from the mixture or use a spatula to let a small amount of batter to drift back to the surface. The batter should drift in thick ribbon-like figures that do not sink in immediately once it hits the surface of the mixture. It should also have tripled in volume.
Combine the baking powder and flour and sift the mixture over the cake 1/3 at a time. After each addition, use a rubber spatula to gently fold the powders into the egg batter using repeated scooping motions until no streak of four remains.
Divide batter evenly between prepared pans and bake for about 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 15 minutes on a wire rack then remove from the pan to cool completely.
For the soaking Liquid:
- Combine the evaporated milk, condensed milk and whipping cream in a tall container with a spout.
Assemble the Cake
Lay the first layer of the cake on your rimmed serving plate. Poke holes all over the surface of the cake using the tines of a fork.
Gradually pour half of the milk mixture over the surface of the cake, stopping frequently to avoid the milk from overflowing. Let cake sit until the liquid is absorbed by the cake (no milk mixture is on top of the cake. Some milk on the base is ok).
Meanwhile, beat the heavy cream with the icing sugar on a high-speed until stiff peaks are formed. Spread 1/3 of the icing on the surface of the first layer of the cake. Lay the second layer of cake on top and poke holes all over the surface again. Gradually pour remaining half of the milk mixture over the second layer. Let sit until no liquid is sitting on the surface of the cake.
Ice the top and sides of the cake completely using the remaining whipped cream. Top the cakes with cherries.
Sponge cake recipe adapted from Natasha's Kitchen.