1 1/4 cup cake flour (141 grams)
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons almond meal/flour ( 96 grams)
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 large eggs , room temperature
4 large egg yolks , room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar (200 grams)
1/2 cup unsalted butter , melted (113 grams)
2 cups whole milk (500 ml)
1/2 cup granulated sugar , divided (100 grams)
Pinch salt
1 split vanilla bean , seeds scraped
3 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups heavy whipping cream (500 ml)
1/3 cup powdered sugar (66 grams)
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1/2 cup grams seedless raspberry jam
2 7- ounce packages marzipan
Pink gel food coloring , optional
Green gel food coloring , optional
Powdered sugar , for dusting


2.Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour 3 8-inch cake pans and line with parchment paper.
3.Combine the cake flour, almond flour, and salt. Set aside.
4.In a heat-proof bowl set over a pot of simmering water (or use a double-boiler), whisk the eggs, egg yolks, and sugar until warm to the touch and sugar is completely dissolved.
5.Beat with an electric mixer on medium high until pale and doubled in volume, about 4-5 minutes. Fold in the flour mixture. Fold in the melted butter
6.Divide batter between prepared pans. Bake until lightly golden on top and bounces back when lightly pressed, about 12-15 minutes. Let cool in the pan 10 minutes, then carefully transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.
7.The cake layers can be made ahead. Wrap in plastic wrap and store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
9.In a medium saucepan set over medium heat, warm the milk, 1/4 cup sugar, salt and vanilla bean seeds until barely steaming, stirring occasionally.
10.In a separate bowl whisk together the egg yolks, remaining 1/4 cup sugar, and cornstarch. Add warmed milk mixture in a slow steady stream while whisking constantly. Once fully incorporated, return mixture to the saucepan and set over medium high heat. Stir constantly until mixture is thickened, about 4-5 minutes. Reduce heat and cook for 1 minutes more. Remove from heat and add butter and vanilla extract.
11.Pass through mesh strainer to remove any cooked egg bits, then chill completely in the fridge.
12.The pastry cream can be made ahead, stored in the fridge for up to 5 days.
14.With an electric mixer, beat whipping cream until it starts to thicken. Add powdered sugar and vanilla and beat to stiff peaks.
15.Can be made ahead, but for best results use within 24 hours.
17.Place one cake layer on a plate or cake stand. Cover with the raspberry jam, leaving a 1 inch border around the edge.
18.Top with pastry cream. If pastry cream is too thick to spread, add a little whipped cream to loosen it up.
19.Top with another cake layer.
20.Pile about half of the whipped cream on top, shaping it into a dome.
21.Place the last cake layer on top, carefully pressing it down around the dome of whipped cream (it helps if the cake is at room temperature). The top of the cake should have a slightly domed appearance.
22.Cover the entire cake with the remaining whipped cream. Chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes and up to overnight.
24.Use your hands to knead the marzipan into a ball. Sprinkle a clean work surface with powdered sugar. Roll marzipan out into a large disk about 1/4 inch thick. Be careful you don't roll it too thin or it could tear. If it sticks, add more powdered sugar.
25.Carefully roll the marzipan onto the rolling pin (using more powdered sugar to prevent it sticking to itself), then unroll it over the chilled cake.
26.Use your hands to smooth marzipan over cake. Trim the edges of the marzipan at the base of the cake with a knife and set them aside. Dust cake liberally with powdered sugar. If desired, pipe some more whipped cream around the base to cover up any marzipan imperfections (that's what I did!).
27.To make a rose for the top (optional), tint some of the marzipan trimmings with pink gel food coloring and knead with your hands until color is even. Roll into 5 marble-sized balls, then squish them flat with your fingers. Roll one disk (petal) up, then wrap the remaining petals around it, flaring them out slightly as you get to the last few. Pinch the bottoms together and then pinch off any excess. Tint more of the trimmings green, then roll out and cut into leaves. Stick leaves to rose and press gently on top of the cake.
28.NOTES: Look for marzipan in the baking aisle of a well-stocked grocery store. You can also purchase it online. I found this video very helpful with assembly.

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