Rainbow Cake

A rainbow cake inside and out to welcome another gorgeous niece to our family :)

My sister wanted to make a rainbow cake herself for Lissie's first birthday but couldn't find the time, hence a rainbow cake to welcome little Florence instead.

A couple of mistakes on this one but no major tantrums :D

The rainbow topper was super easy to make, there is a Krazy Kool Cakes tutorial to show you how. Squashing a flower cutter to make a cloud cutter... genius!


A few people have asked how I baked the sponges and if I have a special set of tins for rainbow cakes. Er... no. I have two tins and this is all I can fit in my oven, so I baked two layers at a time. I usually divide my cake mix in two but as the layers could be thinner, I divided it in to three. I then coloured two parts and got them straight in to the oven to bake while I coloured the third. As the layers were thinner, they only took 20 minutes to bake and the third mix was fine covered with some cling film until it could go in. While the third layer was baking, I then made another batch of cake mix and repeated the process. 

If you're making a rainbow cake, you'll need to use gel paste food colouring. These are highly concentrated to give that rich colour and a little goes a long way. The set I have is by Rainbow Dust and I got them from The Cake Decorating Company.

The filling is a white chocolate ganache. This was actually my second attempt at a white ganache, my first was on Fred's 70th cake and it ended up in the bin after it split. The same almost happened to me again; I guess it's easier to do with white chocolate because its fat content is high? Anyway, I must have had my calm head on this time because I decided I'd try to save it. All those people that say you can't recover ganache once it's split... you lie! I managed to save mine by warming up some left over cream, adding a little at a time, and mixing continually until hey presto, it was back! I caught mine quick so maybe that helped. Some say to drain any excess oil first and and if you're out of cream, apparently warm milk also does the trick.

To be honest, I thought the white chocolate ganache was disgusting and I don't think that has anything to do with the fact it split. I don't know what I was expecting considering I don't like white chocolate but for me it was horribly sickly sweet. I know ganache is only as good as the quality of the chocolate you put in it but I didn't skimp there so I think it's just yuk. My sister said it was fine, and Lissie still wanted seconds but I don't think I'll be making it again.

I love the little hands in this photo waiting patiently for her slice of cake
The biggest mistake I made with this cake, and I'm not sure how I haven't experienced this sooner, was to cover it with fondant right after it had been in the fridge overnight. I believe as the cake warmed up it caused condensation to form on the fondant and this made it impossibly sticky, so I struggled to smooth it. Apparently this problem is amplified with marshmallow fondant which explains why mine was so bad. I've read the trick is to chill the cake long enough to harden the frosting/ganache, but not chill the cake all the way through so I'll be more aware of this next time. Fortunately the clouds managed to disguise most of the imperfections.

The clouds are airbrushed on. I'm really enjoying my airbrush now I'm getting the hang of it. This was a really easy affect. I just cut a cloud shape out of some paper and held it against the cake, moving it around as I sprayed. My practise run on some paper actually looked better but I'm still pleased with the result. I should have worn some gloves as I had nice blue fingers after.

So I've probably waffled on long enough. I think that's about all I have to say on this one :D


Fred's 70th Walkers Cake

Just as I'm thinking I've got the the hang of this cake malarkey I'm put back in my place. This cake was a nightmare from start to finish, one disaster after another... fondant tearing, arms falling off (not mine), ganache splitting and so on.

I'll admit it was too much for me this time, I had a meltdown and Mr Chris came running because he thought the world was ending. When he realised it was just my cake, he sorted me out with a little pep talk and I was back on my feet refusing to be defeated! What would I do without him?! 

 Fortunately it came together in the end...

I can't take credit for the design of this cake as it was a Cakey Cake creation. I always search the web for inspiration before starting a cake but I'm determined to start coming up with my own designs - searching for inspiration on the theme as opposed to other cakes that match the theme.

The hills are airbrushed following Cakey Cake's tutorial. This was the part I was most expecting to go wrong but it was the only part that went well. The only mistake I made was creating too much variation in the height of my hills, so when I raised my template to spray again, I couldn't position it without overlapping what I'd already done. The solution was simple, although it took Chris and I an embarrassingly long time to realise it. I made a mark on my template above the highest hill so I would be able to line it up again. Then I drew a new set of hills just slightly above the first ones and running in to the highest one, cut the template again, and placed it back on to the cake. I think it worked well as it makes the hills in the background disappear behind the ones in the front.

Inside is a vanilla sponge and my first attempt at a strawberry swiss meringue buttercream (SMBC) filling.  This is a lot lighter, fluffier and not as sweet as normal buttercream icing. It passed the taste test but my recipe made a very small amount. It was only just enough for the filling so I ended up making a dark chocolate ganache to frost the cake, which I think overpowered the SMBC. Not to mention I overheated my first batch of ganache and it ended up in the bin. At least I know to increase the quantities for my SMBC next time.

Again this cake is covered with my home made marshmallow fondant. I think I made a mistake this time as the fondant was quite dry before I'd finished adding all the icing sugar. I probably didn't melt my marshmallows enough but I was able to save it by kneading in some store bought fondant to give it more stretch.

As you've probably worked out, I did not enjoy every minute of this cake but the reaction it got made it all worthwhile. I get frustrated when a cake is not going to plan because I want it to be perfect, but when you see how much someone appreciates it, that is what makes it perfect. 

When Fred, my father-in-law to be, "got something in his eye" and the rest of us struggled from a similar affliction, I forgot all the disasters and mishaps with this cake and in that moment it became one of my favourites. 


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