The cake layers can be baked, cooled, and wrapped in plastic up to a day ahead. Just before serving, spread filling over one layer, leaving a 1-inch border around the edge, then assemble the cake. When it’s time for dessert, make the meringue, frost the cake, and brown it.
- 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pans
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pans
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 3/4 cups sugar
- 2 large eggs, plus 3 large egg yolks (reserving whites for meringue, plus 1 additional white)
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1 cup milk
- 5 ounces frozen raspberries, thawed and drained (1/2 cup)
- 1/4 cup raspberry preserves
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees, with rack in center. Butter two 8-inch round cake pans; line bottoms with parchment paper. Butter paper; dust with flour; tap out excess. In a large bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
- Using an electric mixer, in a large bowl, beat butter with 1 cup sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla; beat until combined.
- Alternately add flour mixture and milk, beginning and ending with flour mixture; beat just until combined. Divide batter between prepared pans.
- Bake cakes side by side (not touching), rotating pans halfway through, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes. Cool in pans 10 minutes. Run a knife around edge of pans. Invert cakes onto a cooling rack; remove parchment. Cool completely, upside down. (Wrap in plastic, and store at room temperature, up to 1 day.)
- In a small bowl, combine raspberries and preserves. On an ovenproof serving platter, place one cake layer, bottom side up; spread with raspberry mixture, leaving a 1-inch border. Top with second cake layer, bottom side up.
- Preheat oven to 450 degrees, with rack in bottom third. Using an electric mixer, beat reserved whites with additional egg white until soft peaks form. Gradually add 3/4 cup sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time, beating whites until stiff. Using a spatula, frost top and sides of cake, lifting spatula occasionally to make peaks. Bake until tips of meringue brown slightly, about 2 minutes, watching carefully so they don’t burn.