Saturday, July 4, 2009


Today is a day to celebrate our freedoms and give thanks for those who serve our country and keep us safe. We may grumble about taxes and politicians--not always in that order--but we still live in the land of the free.

It's a grand ole' flag...flag cake, that is. The Barefoot Contessa has done it again with an incredible recipe that produced an "ah" worthy cake. Perusing the Food Network website for some inspiration for our Fourth of July barbecue, I decided to make just one dessert, a half sheet cake, to go with the brownies and chocolate chip cookies that my sister was going to bake and bring. Ina has a great video so the cake is a no-brainer.

How someone can misplace a half sheet cake pan is beyond me. More than likely I brought a dessert to a celebration and never remembered to take the pan. A trip to Michael's and $20 got me another Wilton pan.

While Ina's recipe is marked intermediate, it was a piece of cake (boo! I know; puns are the lowest form of humor) to put together. Good thing Fourth of July comes only once a year because over a pound and a half of butter as well as a pound and a half of cream cheese went into this celebration. But it DOES have lots of fruit on it, so it must be healthy, right?

Serves 20 - 24
For the cake:
2 1/4 sticks (18 tbs) unsalted butter at room temperature
3 cups sugar
6 extra large eggs at room temperature
1 cup sour cream at room temperature
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
3 cups flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
1 tsp Kosher salt
1 tsp baking soda

For the icing:
4 sticks (1 lb) unsalted butter at room temperature
1 1/2 lbs cream cheese at room temperature
1 lb confectioners sugar, sifted
1 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract

To assemble:
2 half-pints blueberries
3 half-pints raspberries

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Butter and flour an 18 X 13 X 1 1/2 inch sheet pan

Cream the butter and sugar in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment on high speed, until light and fluffy. On medium speed, add the eggs, 2 at a time, then add the sour cream and vanilla. Scrape down the sides and stir until smooth.

Sift together the flour, cornstarch, salt, and baking soda in a bowl. With the mixer on low speed, add the flour mixture to the butter mixture until just combined. Pour into the prepared pan and smooth the top with a spatula. Bake in the center of the oven for 20-30 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool to room temperature.

For the icing, combine the butter, cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, mixing just until smooth.

Spread three-fourths of the icing on the top of the cooled sheet cake. Outline the flag in the icing with a toothpick, then fill in the upper left corner with blueberries. Place 2 rows of raspberries across the top of the cake like a red stripe. Put the remaining icing in a pastry bag fitted with a star tip and pipe two rows of white stripes below the raspberries. Alternate rows of raspberries and icing until the flag is completed. Pipe stars on top of the blueberries.

Serve the cake right in the pan.

Hooray for the red, white, and blue!


  1. This turned out so beautifully! Great job!
    Happy 4th!

    Thanks for sharing!

  2. Beautiful cake--I think that the fruit counteracts the butter and cream cheese and makes it healthy and no calories. ;-)

    Happy 4th!

  3. Looks delicious. And of course anything with berries must be good for you, right? I mean, blueberry antioxidants and all...

  4. What a beautiful looking cake.

  5. Yes, the fruit makes the cake healthy : ) I've always wanted to make one of these, they're so pretty. You did a fabulous job!! Looks beautiful and yummy. I'm on my way for a slice : )


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