Rather than dwell on or worry over spilt milk, or in this case a lop-sided cake desperately needing more frosting, I decided to “go with the flow” and accept all things in their imperfection.

After all, it is Labor Day, and who wants to labor any more than necessary anyway?

Thus, I named my layer cake creation with the appropriate adjective: rustic.
For some silly reason, in my mind, I associate all things rustic with a bit of imperfection.
As stated, this really is a frivolous connection in that everything in life, whether rustic or chic, is somewhat imperfect.

That’s life.

And our job, here on earth, is to live it all and LOVE it all despite in imperfections in appearance or otherwise.

Rustic Pistachio Choclolate Vanilla Layer Cake-022

While this cake may appear perfectly imperfect visually, your taste buds may beg to differ.

And besides…who likes all that frosting anyway?

Rustic Pistachio Chocolate Vanilla Layer Cake

Chocolate Cake:
2 cups sugar
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup boiling water

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat two 9-inch cake pans with butter and dust with all-purpose flour.
Stir together sugar, flour, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda and salt in large bowl. Add eggs, milk, oil and vanilla and beat on medium with an electric mixer for about 2 minutes. Stir in boiling water (batter will be thin). Pour batter into prepared pans. 
Bake 30 to 35 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool cake in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
Un-mold and cool completely.
Once cool, slice each cake round through the center to create 4 rounds.

(Obviously the vanilla and chocolate cake layers can bake simultaneously).

Vanilla Cake:
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 tsp. baking powder
1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/4 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 cup whole milk

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly coat a 9-inch cake pan with butter and dust with all-purpose flour. Sift the cake flour, baking powder, and salt into a large mixing bowl.
Beat in the butter with an electric mixer on low, until the mixture resembles coarse sand. Beat in the sugar and then the egg. Add the vanilla and milk, and beat on medium-high, just until blended. Do not overbeat.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean — 30 to 35 minutes. Cool cake in the pan on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
Un-mold and cool completely.

Pistachio Frosting:
(Double the recipe if you really want an appropriate amount for a not so rustic looking cake)
1 1/4 cups half and half
3/4 cup unsalted, shelled pistachios
1/2 cup sugar
4 large egg yolks
2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup butter, room temperature
2 drops all natural green food coloring (optional)

In a small saucepan, heat the half and half and pistachios to a boil. Remove from heat; cover and let stand 1 hour. Whisk sugar, yolks and flour in medium bowl to blend. Bring half and half mixture to simmer; gradually whisk into yolk mixture.Return to same saucepan; stir over medium heat until the mixture forms thick bubbles, about 5 minutes. Stir in the vanilla.
Transfer to a food processor or high speed blender and whir until nuts are very finely chopped. Transfer the pistachio pastry cream to bowl. Cover and cool to room temperature, about 2 hours.
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter in large bowl until fluffy. Add pistachio pastry cream by 1/4 cupfuls, beating well after each addition. Add the food coloring, if desired.

Frost each layer before adding the next, beginning with two chocolate layers, centering with the thicker vanilla layer, and ending with the last two chocolate cake layers.
Frost all your heart desires.

Top with toasted pistachios and fresh bing cherries.

Eat your heart out, baby.

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