Tres Leches Cake is the perfect indulgence for any festive occasion; a sponge cake soaked in three kinds of sweetened milk and topped with whipped cream, it is a dairy lover’s dream come true!
It is funny the way photographing food has changed my perception of winter and light. It used to feel like the long nights and cold weather lasted for months. But now that I mark light by whether or not I have enough to photograph my dinner I am much more aware of the approaching spring. Already I have enough light to begin taking decent photos again (mind you I am also behind so it might take me a week or 2 to catch up to those photos).
This is very exciting.
Anyway, about this cake. This is the long awaited John’s birthday cake. Now this cake was a Very Big Deal. Why? Because I don’t particularly like Tres Leches Cake, so I know John did not think I would ever make it. And John? He loves it. Like loves it more than any other dessert I can think of except maybe mousse. And for what’s it worth, the kids agree with John. This was a huge hit. (If you are wondering why it is not my thing, it is just a little sweet for me, and I do not particularly care for the texture of milk soaked cake. No biggie, just not for me.)
I made this now, because it was John’s big birthday surprise (as far as food went). But this cake would be really good in the summer, cold from the fridge. And fresh berries would cut some of that sweetness too. I would also like to try it with a coffee flavor. Heck I may be talking myself into trying to make it again, only in the summer! Goodness knows my family would like me to. They went crazy night after night for this (it is a 9X13 cake, so it took us a few days to eat).
I am going to link you to Pati’s Mexican Table for the recipe, as that was the recipe I used and she explains the cake really well. My only change was to add a few teaspoons of Kahlua to the soaking milks and 2 tablespoons of Kahlua to the cake batter (I added it with the vanilla). I did all this, unsurprisingly, in an effort to make the cake a little less sweet vanilla for me. I also added, for the same reason, salt: 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt to the cake batter, and 1 t coarse sea salt to the soaking milk mixture.
For the whipped cream topping I used Snowville Creamery heavy whipping cream. I have mentioned them in the past as being my top choice for whipped cream. You certainly do not need to search them out, but I have found that a higher butterfat, less processed cream will hold its topping better with just a little corn starch from the powdered sugar used to sweeten it. Plus it just tastes better! You do have to watch carefully when whipping to make sure it does not turn into butter though!