Pink rainbow and Tatty Teddy cake

My daughter is currently into Tatty Teddy, and for her birthday she had asked for a Tatty Teddy cake. A {at the time} secret Tatty Teddy cake board was created on Pintrest and off I went trawling through numerous {lots and lots and lots!} of websites looking for inspiration for said cakes. Friends even joined in the search and sent me links to places who sold such cakes for additional inspiration! Eventually, I had gathered a good selection of images and had a rough idea of how to make a Tatty Teddy {is it obsessive to confess I made a dummy teddy out of play dough too see if what I had in mind was doable?!}

I had originally planned to make a little Tatty Teddy figurine to sit on top of the cake, but due to time constraints and not having the right material to work with {my local supermarket doesn’t stock sugarpaste so ended up using royal icing}, I eventually had to abandon the idea and decided to make a flat decoration instead. Tatty teddy rainbow cake

However, before I hastily ended up having to make the flat Tatty Teddy topper, I had to decide on what type of cake to make. A friend of mine had made a very impressive rainbow cake for her wee boy last year, and it is something that is on my baking bucket list {still to be posted}. This being a cake for a 6-year-old girl though, I thought I’d make a pink rainbow cake, or ombre cake as I soon learned it’s also called. Again, I set off scouring the web for suitable recipes. I’m not very keen on plain cakes with plain frosting {they are usually too sweet for my liking}, so I had to alter my search phrase to find something with a bit more flavour. Both me and and munchkin really like raspberries and I was delighted when I stumbled across a Lemon Raspberry Ombre Cake with White Chocolate Buttercream over at The Sweet Spot.Pink rainbow cake layers

Cake and decoration decided upon, the only thing remaining was to bake it! Swee San at The Sweet Spot includes a few handy tips in her post, which are great if you {like me} are a rainbow/ombre cake novice. I’ve added the ones I found most useful below, adapting them slightly.Pink rainbow cake sponges

Tips on making a tall rainbow/ombre cake:
1. Weigh all the batter before starting to divide it into each layer, to ensure all the cake layers will end up the same height.
2. Start with the lightest colour and gradually add the colouring to each layer in order to reuse the same mixing bowl and save on washing up a lot of bowls.
3. For colouring, use a gel or paste if possible, as it gives a better colour than liquid food colouring. I used the same gel for all layers but other recipes often seem to use two similar shades to create the different coloured layers.
Pink rainbow cake being assembled5. Usually when the cake is low, it doesn’t rise that high. But if it does, trim off the top so it’s flat when assembling the cake.
6. When frosting, spread a thin layer of frosting on each cake layer before adding the next one. If the diameter of the cake is 6″ / 15cm or smaller, it’s advisable to use a bamboo stick / skewer to secure all the layers while frosting so the cake doesn’t ‘run off’. Once you’re done frosting, you can remove the stick.Pink rainbow cake with crumb coating

It might seem a bit cumbersome having to make separate sponge cakes for each layer {I usually just make one sponge and slice it into layers} and also having colour each one individually, but it doesn’t take very long to do these extra steps and it’s totally worth it in the end when cutting the cake and seeing the different coloured layers!

Slice of pink rainbow cake

I was in a bit of a rush to get the cake complete before heading off to munchkin’s birthday party and unfortunately the Tatty Teddy topper cracked in a few places when adding it to the top of the cake, but munchkin was still happy with it 🙂

Tatty teddy cake

Pink rainbow / ombre cake

Ingredients
Cake
250g unsalted butter
200g caster sugar
1 lemon, zested
4 eggs
300g cake flour (or all purpose flour)
1½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp bicarbonate soda
180ml milk
120g raspberry puree* (see below)
1 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt

Buttercream
250g unsalted butter, room temperatured
250g icing sugar
100g white chocolate, melted
0.5 tsp salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
1-2 tbsp of milk if needed, depending on the consistency of the buttercream

Method
Cake
1) Preheat the oven to 175C and prepare the cake tins.
2) Cream butter, sugar and lemon zest until creamy and fluffy. Add in eggs one at a time, incorporating each fully before adding next.
3) Sift the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and bicarbonate soda) into a bowl.
4) Squeeze the lemon juice into the milk. Add the vanilla extract.
5) Fold in ⅓ of the dry ingredients. Add in ½ of milk and mix well. Repeat by alternating flour and milk, ending with flour.
6) Weigh the batter, then pour one fifth into a bowl, add the raspberry puree and food gel and mix until evenly coloured. Repeat for the remaining three coloured layers. Leave one layer, the final one, as is to keep it cream coloured.
Suggestion for amount of raspberry puree for each layer:
2nd layer – add 15g raspberry puree
3rd layer – add 25g raspberry puree
4th layer – add 35g raspberry puree
5th layer – add 45g raspberry puree
Add the colouring to enhance the ombre/gradient tones. After adding raspberry, the batter tends to become a bit grey.
7) Bake each layer for 20 minutes or till skewer comes out clean. Remove tray from oven, let it cool and invert it out to a wire rack.
Buttercream
1) Cream the butter until creamy.
2) Add in the icing sugar, salt and vanilla and continue to beat until fully incorporated.
3) Melt the white chocolate and add into the mixture. Stir well until combined and fluffy.

Assembling the cake
Lay the darkest coloured cake on a cake board. Spread a thin layer of buttercream. Then lay the 2nd layer and spread with a thin layer of buttercream. Continue until you have assembled all the layers. If the cake layers moves during the assembly, insert a skewer into the middle to keep it stable (see tips above)
Spread and cover the cake with the remaining buttercream.

* I had a 150g punnet of raspberries which I made into a raspberry puree by heating it in a pot over a low heat with a bit of icing sugar and lemon juice while stirring and mashing the raspberries until smooth. Then strain the puree through a sieve to remove the seeds. I ended up with 90g of finished puree, which was a bit less than the recipe asked for. Next time I’d use 200g of raspberries instead when making the puree.

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