31 July 2013

Rainbow Layer Cake

We have a small celebration coming on the weekend. Moo's parent are celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary. They have organised for all of the family to go on a picnic on Saturday and we need dessert so what better way for me to get some cake practice in than to make them a cake!
I started with web searching as you do, to get some ideas. A bit of thought and I figure out that 40 years is ruby, lets run with that idea. I have never done a layer cake an always wanted to and the best one I have seen is a rainbow layer cake which would be such an awesome surprise when its cut open.

Fast forward to this morning where the shenanigans began early! After breakfast was done Sprocket donned his apron and we set to work mixing up the cake mix.

Sprocket beating the eggs

Sprocket helped me to measure out and mix up the ingredients, in between running back to the lounge to watch the tele that I had put on to keep Giz busy. All had to be baked before 10:30 as we had to go out. 
Mini Chef mixing up the cake mix

Mixing all that cake batter required some muscle, so I got in and helped him out a little before splitting the mix out into 6 bowls, one for each colour!

I think I lost Sprocket around now, the TV got a bit too interesting but he did keep popping back to see what I was doing and helping for a few mins at a time! I didn't mind, I was just able to get it all done quicker. By this time my parents had arrived, as they usually do on a Wednesday so I had help with the cake and the kids!
So the batter is all split out, which I weighed so each layer would be roughly the same thickness once cut.

I had a bit of trouble getting the violet right, I'm still not sure if it will be ok once its cut but time will tell I am sure! The red took a lot of colour to get that red and it still didn't look right so I had to cross my fingers on that one as well.

Next step! Get them all baked, yes on at a time and I thankfully have 2 cake pans to work with or it would have taken twice as long! So one at a time I flour the pan, pour the batter and bake each cake. Once done I pull them out, turn onto the cooling wire and wash ready for the next cake. Did I get it done before I had to go? Yep, I did and I managed to bake the extra bit of batter I had left over! This is how they looked once baked.

 I am so very happy with how all the colours came out. I know the insides will look different as well as the outsides brown slightly as they cook. The red went darker as it baked and I just love the orange I was able to create. I am curious to see how the violet comes out once its cut, I'm still not sure on that one! Time to leave them to cool so we head out and do what needs to be done.

 We return home at about 1pm with a quick lunch and Giz in bed for his nap I get back to work. At the very least I need to have the fondant on the cake before I go to bed tonight and I may as well get working while I have one kid in bed. I set Sprocket up with a painting activity and set to making the buttercream.

Once the buttercream is made, its time to start stacking my cake tower and getting it taking shape which is also where the fiddly and tricky stuff begins! More attention and care required from this point so I don't completely stuff it up!
I start with Violet, then blue, green, yellow, orange and finally red. I give it all a crumb coat of butter cream ready for the fondant and set it aside to set while I start to roll out the fondant.

 Before I start rolling the fondant I carefully measure the cake so I know how big it needs to be. So many times before I have made a guess and it has been wrong! If you have ever worked with fondant you will know how hard it is to fix it once you have put it on the cake! Thankfully, I have learnt though. So I start rolling and I am a little concerned that I don't have enough but Dad and I measure and check and get it all even and flat. I am so glad I have help at this point, moving a sheet of fondant without it splitting is a real challenge! We maneuver the cake and rolled fondant so its it literally just flipped over to cover the cake. a bit of work and I end up with a white cake! 

I need to leave it for a bit to let the fondant harden a little before I decorate it. I am so happy that it has so far gone smoothly and happy with the result. I can see it needed a bit more butter cream on the outside to reduce those ridges but after looking at it for a bit I kinda like the effect it gives.

I leave it for about half an hour and go back to work on smoothing it and thinking about where I am going to place decorations. I already have an idea about how I want it to look. On Monday I set Sprocket up with a heart cutter and some rolled fondant and he cut me 50 small hearts and about 10 larger ones and I picked up a red sugar rose on sale which I had to work with as well.

I started with adding a sugar ribbon around the bottom of the cake and made a bow. I am not entirely happy with it but not bad for a first effort. Next, I placed the rose as it was the largest item. Now to sticking the hearts with the largest hearts first before moving on to the smaller ones, all 40 of them, one for each year of marriage. I had decided to cascade the hearts down the side from the base of the rose to provide some decoration for the sides of the cake. All that remained was the number for the top, 40 of course! A bit of a dust with some edible glitter and it was all done!

So here is the final result, a secret rainbow layer cake for a 40th wedding anniversary!

I am looking forward to cutting it and seeing both how it looks and how everyone else looks when they see it! I will post and update on Saturday afternoon or Sunday with how it looks cut and possibly their expressions if I am fast enough with the camera! I will update on twitter when I post the update here.


Here are the pics of the cut cake, I am just over the moon with how it turned out and would do it again in a heartbeat. Completely worth the effort and everyone loved it!

xx Natanie


  1. Amazing! What a wonderful cake. And congrats to the folks on their 40th. Wishing them another 40!

  2. Oh wow, that looks amazing. I can't wait to see it cut. I want to go and make one now just to see all those colours inside :)

  3. That turned out lovely -- what a creative idea! I'm really looking forward to the cake-cutting pictures. :-)