This strawberry layer cake recipe will impress your friends at the next summer barbecue.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Grease with butter and flour 3 9 - inch round pans
Beat butter, oil and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, and beat them in until well incorporated.
Sift together flour, baking powder, and powdered gelatin into another bowl. Set aside
In a blender, or food processor, blend together strawberries, milk and vanilla, so that it's nice and smooth. If you desire a deeper red color, then add some food coloring to this mix.
Alternating between flour and milk mixture. Slowly mix into butter mixture. Once incorporated then mix on medium speed for a couple minutes.
Bake for 30 - 35 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Set to cool. Once cool enough to touch take out of pans and let cool completely on wire racks
Beat cream cheese and butter until light and fluffy. Add sugar and vanilla, and mix in slowly. Once Incorporated, mix on high speed until it is light and fluffy.
Make ahead and refrigerate so it will be cold when you go to frost the cake.
Use clean strawberries.
Remove the stem and cut the berries into small pieces.
Put the strawberries and sugar into a small saucepan.
Add the water and stir together.
Heat the berries on the stove top, bringing them to a boil.
Reduce the heat, stir occasionally and cook for 5 minutes.
To thicken the topping we will need to add the cornstarch.
A good method of adding cornstarch is to first put a little water into the cornstarch and stir to combine.
Now spoon a little of the hot mixture into the wet cornstarch mixture and stir with a fork.
Add back to the strawberries.
Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes.
Remove from the heat and stir in the vanilla.
Set aside to cool for cake filling.
Start with filling 2 piping bags with large round tips, one with frosting, and the other with strawberry sauce.
Starting with a bottom layer of cake. Alternating between frosting, and strawberry, make circles like a target.
Put second layer of cake on top of icing, and repeat making circles of frosting and strawberry sauce.
Put the third layer on top, and finishing icing sides and top of cake with frosting. Garnish with fresh strawberries and strawberry sauce.