This is quite possibly the easiest AND moistest cake you ever did bake AND you ever did taste!
OK! There’s this Cuban restaurant here in Chicago that I adore, and they have amazing sandwiches and all sorts of juices and sodas.
I go there, wait in the long line (I completely get it by the way) and order my tuna sandwich—yeah, it’s not that kind of tuna sandwich; you know, the one that has two ingredients and tastes like a mayo sandwich with some grayish tuna thrown in? No. Not even close.
And of course I order my Jarritos soda (it’s ALL about the tamarindo flavor), and then although I know exactly what I want for dessert, I might still peer into the baked goods glass case at all the pretty options only to always, ALWAYS order the same exact thing: a yummy, soft, moist, beautifully airy and sweet, simple piece of tres leches cake.
And as much as I love this place and their delicious homestyle Cuban food and various drinks that you can’t find everywhere else you go, the thing that always calls me back is the tres leches.
It’s the simplest little thing and honestly, that’s what makes it so wonderful. There aren’t a million and one flavors in it, there aren’t any frills, no nonsense.
Just a plain sheet-cake that soaks up a simple mixture of 3 milks (hence the name “tres leches”), and gets topped with freshly whipped cream.
So basically, we’re talking a cloud that gets turned into an even softer cloud, that then gets layered with yet another, even softer, even cloudier… cloud.
It’s a cloud-cloud-cloud cake!
So instead of spending all my lunch money on the tres leches cake pieces, I thought it wise to bake the delicious, fluffy cloud thing myself. So I messed around with it and, well… here. I make it probably every month because I love it so freaking much!
Gonna go dream of clouds now. They’re made of tres leches. Obviously.
One last thing and this is completely going off on a tangent and maybe I’m a little worse for wear lately (thank you lab/grad student life), but can we not say “obvi” anymore? It’s only a couple of syllables more to say the whole word. And it’s not like anyone’s walking around saying, “Ob-vi-ous-ly!!!!” Oh I’d hope not. It’d be like the whole “Ahhhh-mazing” fad that definitely should’ve been long gone by now. And yet, it’s growing like a bad rash—the kind everyone can see.
Yeah, I’m pretty sure that’s my cue to stop typing.
Cloud cake dreams commence!
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Soft and Moist Tres Leches Cake
- 5 eggs
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup butter 1 stick, melted but not hot
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder aluminum-free
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 1/2 cans sweetened condensed milk 21 oz
- 1 1/2 cans evaporated milk 18 oz
- 1 1/2 cups whole milk 12 oz
- 2 cups heavy cream 16 oz
- Preheat oven to 350ºF (176ºC).
- Grease a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.
- In a large bowl, add eggs, 3/4 cup sugar, and vanilla. Use an electric mixer and mix on high for about 3 minutes. It will become pale and thick.
- Add in the melted butter and flour. And before mixing, directly on top of the flour, add the baking powder and salt. With a spoon, mix the dry ingredients together first just to disperse the salt and baking powder into the flour. Don’t over-mix. Pour batter into baking dish and bake until a fork inserted in center comes out clean, approximately 25 minutes (if using a metal baking dish it may be done much sooner).
- While the cake is in the oven take a medium bowl and whisk together the sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, and the whole milk.
- Right when the cake comes out of the oven, poke the top of it many times with a fork and then pour half of the milk mixture over the whole cake. The milk will become absorbed. Then go ahead and slowly pour more milk until the cake doesn't absorb anymore. This may be the whole mixture or a little less but make sure to wait and see if the milk gets absorbed before pouring more over the cake.
- Allow cake to cool before topping with whipped cream.
- While cake is cooling, prepare whipped cream by pouring heavy cream into a medium/large bowl. Add in 1/4 cup sugar. Mix with an electric mixer until you start forming stiff peaks. Spread whipped cream over the top of the cake, cut yourself a piece, and enjoy!