time 1 hr 15 min
difficulty Moderate
  • oven
  • 8-inch square pans/9-inch round pan
  • parchment paper
  • bowl
  • stand mixer
  3 cup 3 cup cake flour  
  1. preheat oven to 350. butter and line two 8-inch square pans or 9-inch round pans with parchment paper. set aside.
  2. in a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt.
  3. place butter in the bowl of a stand mixer, fitted with a paddle attachment. split and scrape the vanilla pod into the butter, discard pod (or reserve for another use).
  4. beat for 3 minutes on medium-high speed until the butter is light and creamy in color. stop and scrape the bowl. cream the butter for an additional 60 seconds.
  5. add the sugar, 1/4 cup at a time, beating 1 minute after each addition. scrape the sides of the bowl before each addition.
  6. add the eggs one at a time. reduce the mixer speed. stir vanilla into the buttermilk.
  7. add the dry ingredients alternately with the buttermilk. mix just until incorporated. scrape the sides of the bowl and mix for 15 seconds longer.
  8. spoon the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with an off-set spatula.
  9. lift up the pan with the batter, and let it drop onto the counter top a couple of times to burst any air bubbles and allowing the batter to settle.
  10. center the pans onto the lower third of the oven and let bake 45 to 50 minutes or until the cake is lightly brown on top and comes away from the sides of the pan and a skewer inserted in the center comes out with moist crumbs attached. cupcakes take ~18-20 minutes.
  11. let cool completely in the pans before removing the cakes and frosting.
  1 tbsp 1 tbsp baking powder  
  1/2 tsp 1/2 tsp salt  
  1 whole 1 whole vanilla bean (split and scraped)  
  1 cup 1 cup unsalted butter (cubed and softened to room temperature)  
  2 cup 2 cup sugar  
  5 whole (large) 5 whole large eggs (at room temp)  
  1 1/4 cup 1 1/4 cup buttermilk (at room temp)  
  2 tsp 2 tsp -1 tbsp vanilla