Sep 28, 2011

Coolest Birthday Cake Ever!!

I just turned 29 and my friend (who is known for her amazing baked goods) offered to make me a surprise cake that "was perfect for me!" Who turns down a cake? Let alone a cake that is perfect for them? NOT ME!
Behold... My 29th birthday cake.
Wow. Right?

Now, I'm not saying this is an easy cake to make... but if you want to go for it - it's totally worth the effort!
Jump to the next page to see the crazy recipe. Thanks Ayumi!

Amazing Rainbow Cake

For the cake:
* 1.5 c butter, softened
* 3 cups sugar
* 4.5 cups cake flour, sifted
* 4.5 tbsp baking powder
* 3/4 tsp salt
* 6 eggs
* 1.5 c whole milk
* 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
* 3/4 tsp almond extract
* Wilton cake icing color gel, in a various colors

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour six 9 inch cake pans (or if you're like me and don't own six pans, do three pans in two batches). 

In a mixing bowl cream butter and gradually add sugar, creaming until light and fluffy. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. In another bowl sift flour with baking powder and salt.

Add flour mixture alternately with milk and flavorings to creamed mixture, beating after each addition until smooth. Divide batter into six (or three) separate bowls. Add desired color gel to each bowl (you'll need different amounts of color for each layer, depending on how intense you want it to be - start small). 

Pour batter into cake pans. Bake for 20 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Run a knife around edge of each pan, and let cool in pans ~5 min. Remove cakes from pans and finish cooling on racks.

(Protip - I did this cake in two batches, which means I made a half batch of the recipe above, baked it, and then made another batch and baked that one, separately. I didn't want the second batch of cake batter sitting around for a long time, because baking powder does funny things when it's allowed to hang out and react with liquid for a while. It's time-consuming but I think it's worth it.) 

For the frosting:
* 2 c (4 sticks) butter, softened
* 12 c powdered sugar
* 1 tbsp vanilla extract
* 6 tbsp cream, plus more as desired

Cream butter in a mixing bowl until light and fluffy. Add 4 cups of powdered sugar and mix, scraping down bowl as necessary. Add cream and vanilla, and gradually add remaining powdered sugar, beating well and scraping down after each addition. You may want to add more cream, as this recipe makes a pretty dense frosting. 

To assemble:

Level each cake layer with a long serrated knife. Spread 1/2-2/3 cup frosting between each layer (you don't have to spread it all the way to the edge, as the weight of the cake will squish it out). After all six layers are assembled, put the cake in the fridge for ~20 minutes to allow it to firm up a bit.

Next spread a thin crumb coating of frosting over the entire cake - this fixes loose crumbs to allow for easier frosting and better presentation. Put the cake back in the fridge for another 30 minutes.

Use the rest of the frosting to make the final frosting layer. You can stick a couple long wooden skewers in the cake to stabilize it, if you want - just don't forget to remove them before serving :) Add some sprinkles on the top! Refrigerate until ready to serve.

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