When DH was a child, his birthday cake of choice was a Champagne Cake from a particular bakery. This was my second year to try to recreate the cake. The first time I made it, I had no idea what the cake was supposed to be like and, as such, it didn't do so well. Last year I was able to taste the cake courtesy of William's family, but we found that the cake had changed greatly over the decades. So I'm left trying to match a cake to the memories of my husband.
Vintage Cakes: Timeless Recipes for Cupcakes, Flips, Rolls, Layer, Angel, Bundt, Chiffon, and Icebox Cakes for Today's Sweet Tooth by Julie Richardson was just published in 2012. I read about this book on one blog or another that I follow. I was pretty excited to see Champagne Cake listed in the Table of Contents, and pretty excited when Santa (he still exists!) gave me a copy for Christmas.
The only change I made to the recipe was to substitute the provided pudding-whipped-cream frosting recipe with a Swiss meringue buttercream. Last time around, we determined that Swiss meringue buttercream was exactly what we wanted (as opposed to a basic buttercream or quick icing).
The resulting cake was delicious, yet it still isn't quite right. I used 9" pans instead of 8" pans, so I only put in 1 layer of pudding filling and, unfortunately, overbaked the cake. I omitted the traditional, curls of pink-colored chocolate that existed on the cake I'm trying to match; I felt I'd been pretty lucky to make a cake, a pudding filling, and a frosting with a baby and I wasn't going to press my luck. Overall it's a good cake, and it should be a perfect cake in a few more drafts.