Knock it off, universe.
I made another cake because I have been obsessing about what I could have done differently and how I could have improved upon my last cake-making foray (that's the universe talking, not me. I don't use words like 'foray.')
It's just that I feel like I'm so close! I feel like I can actually pull this off with just a few tweaks and I get all inspired to try just one more time.
And then the universe knocks me down. The universe can be kind of a jerk sometimes.
This weekend we hung out at my girlfriend Kristin's house for St. Patrick's Day.
Sofia and her bff Dagny on their first St. Patrick's Day
This is Sofia's signature look
Like I did the last time, I got started the night before - but I was smarter from the beginning!
HaHA! No mess this time!
Everything is easier with wine - it's my motto.
I bought food coloring this time and decided to do shades of green.
The last time, I poured the cake mix and puree directly in the pans. The problem with that was I had sprayed the pans, so when I mixed the puree, I was mixing the no-stick spray in with my cake. So I got smart!
Put your cake mix in separate bowls first! Revolutionary!
I was terrified of using too much food coloring
so I was ultra-conservative on my first pass.
Slowly, I mixed the coloring in, praying I didn't use too much and drop by drop, I continued to add coloring until I got the variation I was looking for. I could have gone for more dramatic shading but I was up to like 12 drops in the darkest layer and I kept hearing "bitter cake! bitter cake!" in the back of my mind like a warning bell so I quit while I was ahead.
Varying shades of pistachio. Not quite the kelly green I had in mind but we'll go with it.
Once again, everything went in the oven and I crossed my fingers.
Universe - 1, Desiree - 0.
Technically, I guess it would be Desiree - 4 because now it's going to be four layer cake
instead of five. Ah well.
Flipping them over one more time.
See how one side is higher than the other? To the best of my knowledge,
that's a natural thing and that's why you have to cut the tops off so your layers will be level.
I still love knives, even if they don't love me back.
Time for assembly!
This time around, I wanted to try and stack the layers without filling between each one, so it looked more like my inspiration photo.
After consulting with Pinterest, I settled on brushing each layer with simple syrup because when it comes from a site like I Am Baker, how can you go wrong?
She did a billion-layer cake AND tinted it with fruit instead of food coloring.
*sigh* I'm going to have to try that, probably.
So, I dutifully mixed up a batch of simple syrup and brushed that on each layer before stacking them.
Left side brushed. The syrup kind of seals up the crumbs so your frosting is smooth.
Stacked and ready for Cool Whip-ing
Whipped. Not bad, if I do say so myself!
Cool Whip is infinitely easier than frosting. It's light and super forgiving and it looks pretty without even trying! It took me about ten seconds to ice my cake. But the real test was the taste and we'd have to wait until we got to Kristin's for that.
*drivedrivedrive. stop. get out of the car. "Hey girl! Awww, look at the baby in her green! Aw, thanks! Yes, I made a cake! I hope it doesn't suck!"*
(that was my awesome narration of the time passing so we can get back to the cake)
You guys! It didn't suck! It was actually really good!
I could have made the Cool Whip thicker but other than that, it wasn't bad!
Now, here's where I have to question Ms. I Am Baker. When I cut my cake, all the layers fell apart into little cake triangles. The simple syrup didn't hold them together at all! I have no idea how she got her billion-layer cake to stay together and the next time I make this I'm going to have to put something between the layers to keep them together.
Because, yes I'm making the cake again tomorrow. My playgroup is having a party and you guessed it, I volunteered to make the cake. Thanks to I Am Baker and this little article, I'm going to attempt organic food coloring.
It would be really cool if the universe would cooperate with me on this one.