My Mom worked a lot when we were kids. She was a school custodian and that meant she cleaned and lifted and moved and worked her patootie off for 8 hours a day. She didn't always have time to be fixin' stuff from scratch because she was just plum tired at the end of the day. She was workin' hard for the money. But she made sure we had a good supper to fill us up and a little something sweet for dessert. I still buy those little dessert shells for my family. But sometimes, I'm in the mood for something just a bit more. This cake is soft and sweet and is kinda the grown-up version of those little dessert shells. It is perfectly delicious to eat all by itself but personally, I love it with strawberries (or any kind of berry) and whipped cream.
For the berries:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spray nonstick cooking spray inside a 9x9 baking dish. In a medium bowl, combine flour and baking powder.
In a separate bowl (or stand mixer), beat eggs on high speed for about 4 minutes, until thick. If you’re using a stand mixer, I would suggest using your whisk attachment for this step. Gradually add sugar and beat at medium speed for 4-5 minutes until fluffy. Now add your flour mixture, and mix at low to medium speed until just combined (don’t overmix or cake will turn out rubbery).
In a small saucepan, on medium heat, add milk and butter and stir until butter is melted. Do not boil – you just want this mixture to be very warm (scalded is the cooking term). Take off heat. Add milk and butter mixture to batter, also add vanilla extract and mix until combined. Pour into baking dish and bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
For the strawberries:
Hull strawberries, cut in half, and place in bowl. Sprinkle sugar and lemon juice on top and mix together. Place plastic wrap over bowl and place bowl in refrigerator for about 4 hours (until strawberries are very soft).
Serve cake warm with juicy strawberries spooned on top.
And of course, a little whipped cream.
Cook's Note: For a little variety in the cake, try adding different flavored extracts, like lemon or almond. Need more? Just double the recipe and bake in a 9x13 baking dish for about 25 minutes (until an inserted toothpick or knife comes out clean.)