Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Rainbows, cake and another anniversary...

Mr Becca and I have been together for a long time.  In fact, I'd go so far as to say a Very Long Time (as per Winnie the Pooh), and most of the time it's great.  We were really young when we met, and talked about growing old together.  It's really happening, gosh.
I'd seen a fabulous rainbow cake on another Facebook baker's page and she was kind enough to give her take on how she'd made the cake.  She made it seem not difficult, and I felt like I wanted to give it a go too.  I thought it'd be a lovely surprise for him for our wedding anniversary today.
I needed to borrow the ice blue from my neighbour but had all the other paste colours to hand.
The yellow and green I had bought specifically, so was quite surprised when the yellow paste came out orange.  But was really happy when it came up sunshine yellow upon mixing, woo hoo!
Aren't the colours great? I had to use 1/4 tsp of the gel per tin, but it was worth it - and didn't affect the taste at all. Because I only have 3 8" tins (all exactly the same, from the same shop) I could only bake 3 colours at once. They only took 16 minutes, but then it was time to wash everything down, ready for tomorrow morning.  Instead, I wanted to cut out the wording for the cake with my new Patchwork Cutter alphabet set.  I didn't have flower paste, or mexican paste - only sugarpaste (also known as ready to roll icing) and tylo/cmc powder.  And no experience.  Which led to tears of frustration!  Mr Becca popped in and out of the kitchen (under my watchful eye, so as not to ruin the surprise) and was surprised at how angry I got at the darn cutters, grrr.  Some helpful Facebook fans gave me many hints and tips, and I eventually managed this...
I did two sets, in case one broke somehow.  The next morning, Mini-2 and I got cracking on the remaining layers required.  She's getting to be a dab hand at cracking eggs, and we always crack them into a small bowl so we can pick out any stray bits of shell that may fall in, before we transfer it to the main mixing bowl.  No shell, woo hoo!
She wanted to add in some of the colour gel paste, so here she is doing the green one.
And here's the next three colours of the rainbow, ready to be baked.  I'm not sure why, but I didn't take a photo of the purple before it was baked, sorry.
Once the batters were all sorted and in the oven, she was in her element - utensil licking, ha ha.
I made multiple batches of my signature buttercream icing, using 1kg of icing sugar - gee whizz that stressed out my poor Kenwood!  I had wanted to try out a new petal icing technique, but after layering the individual coloured cakes and crumb-coating the whole assembled cake it didn't look like I'd have enough, boo hoo.
So I tried to get the final layer of buttercream as smooth as possible, and it looked not too bad I think.  It was sitting in the kitchen overnight, and today Mr Becca came down early enough (he's on annual leave this week) that the girls were still having breakfast.  When he saw the cake he said, 'That's some size of cake!'.  Despite them ruining the surprise and saying, 'It's a rainbow cake Daddy!' I cut into it and he was really surprised to see the rainbow - I think it's okay to say he loved it!
Sadly, the heart cracked as I placed it on the cake (lucky I'm not superstitious, isn't it?) so I know to do the decorations just before they need to be placed so they can mould to the cake shape for next time.
It was a rather large cake - 8" round and a full 5" tall!!  So we shared, a lot.  One of my favourite local photographers, Jill at Aspire2be.creative, enjoyed her slices, eventually! ha ha.