Lemon Chardonnay Cake AND a Starburst Rose Tutorial

We are finally moved in, settled down, and I’m back to having a minimum amount of free time. Actually, this weekend is pretty packed with open houses, errand running, and a birthday party! Which made me think, I can’t make another birthday cake without posting the one I made a few weeks ago but had no time to post.


I made this cake for my mother-in-law who loves Kendall Jackson chardonnay. I wanted to find a great chardonnay cake recipe, but instead I ended up making this lemon cake from Flour Bakery and making a chardonnay moistening syrup instead. I attempted an olive oil chardonnay cake I found online, but it was a bust. It was really terrible. So that was thrown out.

You can’t go wrong with a Flour recipe!

Then I made my raspberry filling from a different post here. I used a lemon swiss meringue buttercream recipe I found from The Bubbly Baker. Everything else was delicious, so the cake ended up being good, but I will say I was scared it wouldn’t come together at first.

I also wanted to make a rose decoration, but didn’t feel like making or buying gum paste. I remember seeing somewhere a flower made of Starbursts, so I decided to try it. After all, the yellow Starbursts are lemon flavor so it would match…

Lemon Chardonnay Cake with Raspberry Filling and Lemon Swiss Meringue Buttercream

Yield:  one three layer 9 inch cake


Flour’s Lemon Raspberry Cake From FlourBakery

  • 6 Tablespoons, (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 6 Tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 tablespoon lemon zest
  • 3 cups cake flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 cup milk, room temperature
  • 6 egg whites (if eggs are at room temperature this will separate more easily)

Chardonnay Moistening Syrup

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup chardonnay
  • Zest of one lemon

Raspberry Filling

  • 1 ½ cup frozen raspberries (12 oz)
  • 1 Tablespoon cornstarch
  • 2 Tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ cup sugar

Lemon Swiss Meringue Buttercream

From the The Bubbly Baker

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1 ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • 1 ½ cup butter (3 sticks), cubed and at room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons of lemon extract
  • 1 Tablespoon of lemon zest (optional)


For Cake

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Sift the flour and baking powder together, set aside.
  2. Butter and flour three 9 inch round cake pans, or line with non-stick baking paper.
  3. Beat the butter, oil, salt and 1 cup of sugar until light and fluffy, then beat in the lemon zest and vanilla extract.
  4. On low speed add 1/3 of the flour mixture until incorporated. Add about half of the milk and continue to mix on low speed until incorporated. Stop the mixer and scrape the side and bottom of the bowl well. Add half of the rest of the flour mixture mix on low speed until incorporated. Add the rest of the milk mix on low speed until incorporated, stop the mixer and scrape the side and bottom of the bowl well. Add the rest of the flour and mix on low speed until incorporated.
  5. Whip egg white until foamy, add the rest of the sugar (1/3 cup) gradually until firm peaks formed. Fold the meringue into the butter and flour mixture, until fully combined. Divide the batter evenly among the prepared pans.
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the top of the cake spring back when pressed lightly (the cake will be pale in color).

For Moistening Syrup

  1. Place sugar and water in saucepan and stir to wet sugar. Bring to boil and stir occasionally. Turn heat down to medium and simmer for 1 minute until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature.
  2. Once cooled, add chardonnay and lemon zest. You can add more chardonnay or replace some water with chardonnay if you want a stronger flavor.

For the Raspberry Filling

  1. Bring all ingredients to boil on medium high heat until thickened and sugar has dissolved.

For the Lemon Swiss Meringue Buttercream

  1. Whisk the egg whites and sugar over a simmering pot of water until it reaches 160 degrees
  2. Transfer the mixture to a mixer and whisk on high for about 10 mins (or until the meringue reaches room temperature. The bowl should feel neutral/barely warm when touched).
  3. Add the butter, one cube at a time and continue mixing until all butter is incorporated
  4. Add in the lemon extract and zest and beat to combine. It will be light and fluffy.

For Assembly

  1. Place first layer of cake on cake board. Spread half of moistening syrup on top. Then spread buttercream layer on top. Pipe a circle around that buttercream layer and spread raspberry filling inside circle.
  2. Repeat with second layer of cake.
  3. Place third layer on top and frost entire cake with buttercream. Decorate as you wish or with the starburst flowers!

First I like to make the raspberry filling so it has time to cool down.


Pretty easy and delicious.

DSC_0768_webThen I made the moistening syrup so it could cool down too. You can see the finished raspberry filling in the back.


Then I made the cake so it could cool. Butter, sugar, and oil…


Watch it church into a delicious mixture.


Add in the lemon zest. Love how it looks in the cake.


And then mixing the egg whites and sugar.


It gets nice and fluffy.


Gently fold the egg white mixture into the cake batter. 

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Once combined, fill up the pans.

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It will look like this when baked.

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Press down to ensure it’s finished.

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Then let cool on a cooling rack. You can see they aren’t very tall layers. They bake pretty flat though.

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Then I make the lemon swiss meringue as the cake cooled.



This frosting is sooooo good!

Then assemble the cake. Start your first layer by piping a small amount of buttercream on the cake board or surface.

DSC_0826_web - CopyPlace your first layer on top.

DSC_0828_web - CopyMoisten…

DSC_0829_web - CopySpread buttercream on top.

DSC_0832_web - CopyThen spread raspberry on top.

DSC_0834_web - CopyThen place second layer and repeat. Crumb coat your cake.

DSC_0840_web - CopyAnd then spread a layer of buttercream all over!

DSC_0841_web - CopyI then colored the buttercream yellow and piped a design.

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If you do flowers, put a dab of buttercream on and then stick the flower on top.

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Now for that Starburst Rose tutorial!

Starburst Rose Tutorial


What you’ll need:

That’s pretty much it.

DSC_0704_webUnwrap the colors you want.  In this case I did yellow and then later a mixture of yellow and pink.

DSC_0705_webPlace unwrapped Starburst in the microwave and zap with 10-15 second intervals until softened.

DSC_0706_webMake a small ball about the size of a marble depending on how big you want your rose. Then flatten it with your palms.

DSC_0710_webPlace on a spoon for a curved look and let cool. You could put it in the fridge to harden. Then for the rose, make your bud (on right).

DSC_0709_webWrap the first petal around the bud.

DSC_0712_webWrap two petals around the bud and petal.

DSC_0715_webThen wrap three petals.

DSC_0716_webAnd then five petals.

DSC_0717_webIf you want a bigger rose, go to 7 petals, and then 9, then 11. You get the point. I put some spoons around the last petals so they could harden. Otherwise, the Starburst is so soft it falls.

DSC_0722_webRepeat with other roses! Here’s a dual color one. I took pink Starbursts.

DSC_0728_webThen I took half a marble size of pink and half a marble size of yellow and smushed together.

DSC_0730_webThen smush it flat and make your petals like normal.


DSC_0745_webThere you have it! Easy Starburst roses. They taste way better than gum paste too!

Oh yea, and drink the remaining chardonnay. That’s an order!

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