I would like to wish my sweet little girl a very Happy 12th Birthday today. She is growing up on me so fast I can’t stand it. Each year I try and come up with a special cake for her…I am not a great “baker” but I usually manage to get by. This year I decided to take on the daunting task of creating a Rainbow Cake. I have seen these on different cooking blogs and knew that I would have to try it. Here is the recipe I used for the cake, as well as the steps (and a few hints) to create this amazing, HUGE cake. Don’t make this unless you have a small army to feed…seriously, its a big cake. Also, you will need gel food colorant for this recipe, as well as, a lot of icing. I used a homemade cream cheese, but buttercream would also be good.
Doctored Up Cake Mix Recipe - You will need two batches of this!
1 Box white cake mix (I used Duncan Hines Super Moist)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 tea. salt
4 egg whites
1 1/3 cups of water
2 Tab. vegetable oil
1 cup sour cream
1 tea. vanilla extract
1 tea. almond extract (optional, makes cake fairly sweet and rich)
Mix dry ingredients together, then add wet ingredients. Beat on high for 2 minutes until light and fluffy. Separate the batter into 3 equal portions in 3 separate bowls. Make second batch of cake mix and do the same. Next you will add your gel coloring (I bought mine from Michael’s – Wilton Gel Colorant). Each bowl will be colored a different color of the rainbow…Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue and Purple. Add enough gel to get fairly deep, rich colors or less if you want a more pastel feel to your cake.
Next, you will grease and flour six, 9 inch cake pans. If you don’t have six, just do them in batches. Pour the batter into each pan and bake at 325 degrees until done. For my oven, this was about 20 minutes. Check on your cake about 15 minutes in just to make sure you aren’t over baking. Cooking the cakes at this lower temperature helps to keep the cake from doming too much, which makes them easier to stack. Cake is done when toothpick comes out clean and the cake starts to pull away from the edge of the pan. Let the cakes cool in the pan for about 10 minutes, then turn them out onto a wax papered, hard surface. I used small pieces of cardboard that would fit into my freezer, but you could use cookie sheets as well. After the cakes have cooled, dust off any visible crumbs and if your cakes have domed to much while baking, now is the time to level them using a large serrated knife. Put them in the freezer with wax paper in between the layers for about 1 to 2 hours. This step is very important and will make your life so much easier when you go to stack the layers.
After the 1 to 2 hours in the freezer, remove the layers. Starting with the purple layer, place it on your cake stand, well centered. Frost the top of the cake with your frosting of choice, letting a little spill over the edge. Next, add the blue layer and frost. Repeat with the green, yellow, orange and red layers. This is what your cake should look like now.
Next, apply a thin layer of frosting to the entire cake. This is called the crumb coat. It will capture all the little crumbs still on your cake. Return the cake to refrigerator or the freezer for about 20 minutes or until the crumb coat has set. Remove the cake from the refrigerator and apply your final coat of icing. This should go on smoothly and look very clean if your crumb coat set properly…
Voila, you are done! I iced my cake with a cream cheese frosting and I kept it pretty simple looking on the outside intentionally. I wanted it to look like a boring old white cake, until you cut into it….WOW was that an amazing moment. I have never been so proud of all my hard work and my daughter thought it was the coolest thing she had ever seen. So, if you have an entire afternoon to kill and feel adventurous…try this cake! The end result is worth the effort.