Yesterday was my boyfriend Pete's 25th Birthday :) He was working all day, which was a bit sad for me (although he loves it as he works with dogs at the Blue Cross), but that gave me plenty of time to prepare a special birthday evening for the two of us.
My main task was baking him a birthday cake. He always says he's not a big cake fan, but a birthday cake is a necessary part of a birthday as far as I'm concerned (plus I love cake and baking). I had decided exactly what kind of cake I was going to bake ages ago, it's something I've wanted to try for a long time - Rainbow Cake!
I was a bit nervous about it all going horribly wrong, but it was actually surprisingly easy. The main drawback for me was that I only own one circular cake tin, so had to bake each layer one at a time :/
(This is actually a slightly adjusted recipe from the one I used, as next time I'd prefer a bit more cake batter to work with.)
A few additional points;
- Although the number of colours might look intimidating, remember - you can mix your own, so you only really need a red, yellow and blue, then mix the green (blue & yellow), orange (red & yellow) an purple (red & blue) yourself!
- I used a silicone cake 'tin' which I very lightly oiled to be extra sure the cake didn't stick. If you're using a metal cake tin remember to grease and line to avoid sticking.
- Keep an extra close eye on your layers as they're much thinner than a standard cake. My oven is poor so takes longer than most :/ Bake until the sponge bounces back when lightly pressed or a cocktail stick/skewer comes out clean.
- Allow cake to cool slightly before removing from tin, then leave to cool fully on a cake rack before frosting
- As usual, I cheated on the frosting and used Betty Crocker's Vanilla Frosting which I got from Tesco, but you can get a much greater range of flavours and alternative brands on AmericanSweets.com A lot of these frosting's are 'accidentally vegan' as they contain nothing even close to an animal (or natural!) ingredient, but do be careful to check ingredients as not all brand/flavours are vegan suitable. For my cake I used around a can and a half of frosting to frost between layers and all around the outside - for this modified recipe it might be closer to 2.
We had a lovely evening. Pete got to open all his presents - I got him lots of sweets and biscuits (all suitable for his cow-product-free diet), lots of books, some comics and a torc bangle from St Justin Jewellery. I think he was pretty happy with his haul. I cooked duck legs (£2.50 for 2 in Tesco!) with hoi sin noodles, followed by the cake, then we chilled out with beer/wine and watched Ironclad- the DVD his brother bought for him :)
I'm very glad he had a good birthday evening :) It all makes me excited for my birthday though - shame that's still five and a half months away!!
Hope you're all having a good weekend,
Let me know if you have a go at the rainbow cake. I promise it is easier than it looks, it's more about time than skill.