Dessert First – Triple Layer Star Spangled Cake

Some calendars declare August as “Eat Dessert First Month.” Well since it is also the Coast Guard’s Birthday Month, we can’t let this opportunity pass us by! Each Tuesday during the month of August, our very own Coast Guard food service specialists will share some of their favorite dessert recipes so you can have dessert first!

Coast Guard food service specialists serve in approximately 370 units worldwide. They keep the Coast Guard fleet ready and able to perform the service’s missions. Dessert is always a morale booster, as well as being an important part of special events like a Change of Command.

This patriotic cake is just what we need for Labor Day weekend!

Star Spangled Cake by FS2 Jessica Touchette, photo by SN Sarah Wilson.

Star Spangled Cake by FS2 Jessica Touchette, photo by SN Sarah Wilson.

Triple Layer Cake with Fondant
Made by Second Class Petty Officer Jessica Touchette
Food Service Specialist at Coast Guard Base Seattle


Fondant Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup shortening
  • 1 (16 ounce) package of miniature marshmallows
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2lb powdered sugar


Fondant Directions:

Place the butter in a shallow bowl, and set aside. Place the marshmallows in a large microwave-safe bowl, and microwave on High for 30 seconds to 1 minute to start melting the marshmallows. Carefully stir the water and vanilla extract into the hot marshmallows, and stir until the mixture is smooth. Slowly beat in the confectioners’ sugar, a cup at a time, until you have a sticky dough. Reserve 1 cup of powdered sugar for kneading. The dough will be very stiff. Rub your hands thoroughly with shortening, and begin kneading the sticky dough. As you knead, the dough will become workable and pliable. Turn the dough out onto a working surface dusted with confectioners’ sugar and continue kneading until the fondant is smooth and no longer sticky to the touch, 5 to 10 minutes. Form the fondant into a ball, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight. To use, allow the fondant to come to room temperature, and roll it out onto a flat surface dusted with confectioners’ sugar. If you desire a certain color, I suggest gel color but liquid food coloring works also (but use extra shortening on your hands to avoid staining). Simply add a little bit of coloring at a time and knead in the coloring until you get the desired color. Then continue to refrigerator over night.


3 Layer Cake Ingredients:

  • 1 cup butter room temperature
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cups self rising flour
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract


Cake Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour three (9-inch) cake pans. Using an electric mixer, cream butter until fluffy. Add sugar and continue to cream well for 6 to 8 minutes. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add flour and milk alternately to creamed mixture, beginning and ending with flour. Add vanilla and continue to beat until just mixed. Divide batter equally among prepared pans. Level batter in each pan by holding pan 3 or 4 inches above counter, then dropping it flat onto counter, if you desire colored cakes, mix color drops and mix in separate bowls before adding to cake pans. Do this several times to release air bubbles and assure you of a more level cake. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until done. Cool in pans 5 to 10 minutes. Invert cakes onto cooling racks. Cool completely.


Icing Ingredients:

  • 1lb powdered sugar
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 3 tsp vanilla extract
  • 4 tbsp softened butter


Icing Directions:

Add powdered sugar, heavy cream, vanilla extract, and butter in mixing bowl. Mix on low speed for 2-3 minutes. Then increase speed for 2-3 minutes. Spread icing on each layer and around outside of cake. You are ready to lay fondant!! Enjoy!!


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