Sunday, August 12, 2012

Making Nora's Rainbow Cake

I knew I wanted to do a rainbow themed party for our Rainbow Baby, and the cake was no less a part of the theme. I had seem lots of rainbow layer cakes pinned on Pinterest, and read a few of their ideas and such, then went to making my own! I will warn anyone wanting to do this, that it takes quite a lot of time. I started at 1pm and didn't finish until 7pm. (Granted we had some down time when it was baking, and we ate dinner in there somewhere too, but it's still time-consuming.)

Don't look in the background, you'll see my secret recipe!
 I read that weighting the cake batter was a good way to split it up evenly into 6 parts for coloring. So I borrowed my mom's scale, and weighted it out. If I remember it was close to 12 ounces for 2 boxes of cake mix. (I mixed them together even though they were slightly different.)

I wasn't exact with the weighting, but got fairly close. Here are five of the six bowls of batter. (One was getting dyed red.)

Pretty rainbow batter! It took a while trying to get the right colors and getting the red dark enough not to be too pastel-y pink. I think it's still kind of pink-ish, but the red food coloring I had was getting a little dried out and was hard to mix in, so I settled for this, and I thought it still looked nice.

I baked the cake kind of according to package directions. (It said for two 9-inch rounds, but did't say for three, so I baked them for slightly less time). My mom had borrowed me her layer cake pans, but it turned out hers were 8-inch, and mine were 9-inch. Since I didn't want the cake to be super tall, so I went for the 9-inch and had to put three batches in the oven. (It took quite a while!)

Once the cakes were baked, I sliced off the tops for two reasons: I wanted to make a miniature cake for Nora to smash, and I wanted my layers to sit more flat. The tops weren't perfectly flat like the bottoms, but they weren't very uneven either.

I took the parts that I had sliced off, and took an old can to cut them in circles to layer them (they're upside down right now, but it made it easier to stack them as I frosted them.

I put a crumb coat of frosting (see below) between each layer for Nora's cake. I didn't add extra frosting, because I didn't think she needed the extra sugar (and I was right... she didn't need the sugar she did get!).

For the crumb coating, I just thinned down some of my mom's homemade frosting with milk so it would spread more easily, and not catch the crumbs and make it look all icky. For Nora's cake, I also did the side, since it was all scrap bits of cake, but for the big cake, I just did the top. I probably could have done the sides, but when I went to frost it, it wasn't too crumby. 

The crumb coating on the tops of the big cake layers. Make sure to refrigerate them to let the frosting set and get hard.

For the big cake, I put frosting between each layer (it helped to make the layers more even). And then frosted the whole thing with white. I was going to decorate it and write "Happy Birthday, Nora" on it, but ran out of homemade frosting. I had a jar of store bought that I thought about using, but ran out of time. I think it looked just fine without though.

Nora enjoyed her smash cake.
And the layers looked just about as pretty as the big cake.
The finished product!
(My sister-in-law is cutting into the cake for me.)
Pretty layers!
Pretty cake!

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