Friday, April 30, 2010

Rainbow Party Project #6: Rainbow Cakes Aplenty

Rainbow cake has basically been a week-long project. But yes, I am pleased to tell you that tonight, the night before Rainbow Party Day, the dream has been achieved.

Tonight, on top of the stove, rests a seven-layer cake waiting to be frosted and decorated with M&Ms on the morrow. Its layers, from top to bottom: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet.

Y'all, the rainbow cake is REAL!

But no, you can't see it yet. That would spoil the birthday party surprise!

A LOT of thought went into Rainbow Cake. I toyed with the idea of a straight-on rainbow cake, and was VERY inspired by the rainbow birthday cake over at ChocolateSuze, and her awesome rainbow Mario mushroon cake. But I really, really wanted a rainbow layer cake, and I just almost made the 20-layer rainbow cake, also at ChocolateSuze (I am still ABSOLUTELY going to make that one, just another time...).

Most of the 20-layer cakes that people post online are done with crepes, or otherwise very thin layers. So then I planned to just slice each layer in half horizontally, saving one half of each for a later date, but a very smart mom-friend of mine suggested that instead, I pour a small amount of batter into a regular 8" round pan and just watch it carefully to see when it was done. Done and DONE!

And that's how the rainbow cake was built: plain box of cake mix (on Manager's Special for 86 cents!), one cup of batter taken out and colored and spread into the bottom of an 8" round cake pan, cooked for 15 minutes. Perfect.

The girls, of course, were pillars of strength and sources of unending aid, and they also talked me into making an entire batch--24 cupcakes!--of rainbow cupcakes earlier this week just for them to eat. I'm still not sure what that was all about, but it certainly has not spoiled their taste for rainbow cake any, so it's all good.

And how nice to be able to rest my arm for a few of the 450 strokes called for in the recipe:

Wilton 601-5580 1/2-Ounce Certified-Kosher Icing Colors, Set of 12She learned to do silly voices while stirring from me.

The food coloring that we used is CRAP for your body--seriously, it's made entirely from high fructose corn syrup and those D&C dyes that make kids super-wild--but it's amazingly vivid, and we love it. And how many times have I told the children NOT to put it into straight into their mouths?
Many times. I have asked them not to do this many times.

We did do old-school rainbow for the cupcakes--yes, it's crazy, I baked a seven-layer rainbow cake and then two dozen rainbow cupcakes (well, I ate three, so 21 rainbow cupcakes), because I INVITE TOO MANY PEOPLE TO PARTIES. I need to feel loved, or something. Sydney helped with the cupcakes, in the most excrutiating manner imaginable:
Seriously, multiply that by seven colors and 24 cupcakes. My soul died an hour before we were done, but the child was filled with bliss, what can you do?

I love the randomness of the color when the cakes are ready to bake:
If we don't have our fill of rainbow edibles by the time this party is over tomorrow, it will NOT be for lack of trying on my part.


cake said...

this post captures your voice completely. i could hear you telling it.


julie said...

Unfortunately, rainbow cakes are NOT vegan, and are chock-full of white sugar...

A brief foray away from the little experiment.