This month marks 5 years this blog has been running! Craziness. To celebrate I made a cake. A fancy cake that was new and different and a challenge for me… which qualifies it as one of my monthly challenges for 2016!
I originally planned on making a vertical layer cake, like this one by Amanda from i am baker. Well, we all know I am not great at following directions. So I didn’t realize how TALL these cakes needed to be in order to actually make vertical layers that looked like vertical layers. My cake was much too short and I had to improvise, so I made this checkered cake instead. I still used most of her techniques. 🙂
I used boxed cake. Easy. And the recipe isn’t the goal here. If you want to make your own cake, by all means make that mess in your kitchen.
I colored my cake pink and blue. Cuz pink and blue define me and this cake is to celebrate my blog and me, so it seemed fitting.
Ignore the mini cakes. Totally irrelevant and a poor decision.
So yeah, bake your cakes. Let cool in pan for just a couple minutes, then remove and trim the bump from the top right away. Wrap in cling wrap and put straight into the freezer. For at least a couple hours. I did mine the next day.
Once the cake is good and frozen, get your template ready. I started with my cake pan, tracing a circle onto cardstock. Then I found the center with a ruler. I don’t have a compass so we had to rig something with a pencil and string. Don’t recommend this, you can see how messy my lines are. But it works in a pinch.
Cut off the first layer, then center it on the cake. With a serrated knife, cut around the template with the knife straight up and down. Do this to both cakes.
Then cut the next circle off the template and do the same thing again on both cakes. Do this all the way to the smallest circle.
Wrap parchment paper around the cake to hold the circles together, and tie with a string. Amanda recommends pouring simple syrup over the whole thing. I was too lazy to make simple syrup, so I just brushed corn syrup over the top. Didn’t really do the trick. I recommend following directions like I apparently can’t.
At this point I put the cake wrapped with paper and string into a ziploc bag and into the fringe.
When I was ready to decorate, I put the 2 layers together with a layer of buttercream, then iced the outside of the whole thing in a thin layer of buttcream. I covered it in fondant, which was March’s monthly challenge. (My Easy Buttercream recipe.)
I was really nervous about what the cake would look like when I cut into it. With a technique like this, you just have to hope it’s lined up well and cross your fingers waiting for the cut!
I was super happy with how it turned out! The layers didn’t stay together very well because I didn’t do the simple syrup, but it tasted good and everyone was impressed with the checkers and fondant.
I don’t often make cakes, especially fancy ones. I don’t have a lot of confidence in this area, but this cake definitely helped with that!