To celebrate Pride Month our plans involve baking a rainbow cake called Cara the Unicorn! We’ve taken a recipe straight from the pages of The Power of Sprinkles, a colourful explosion of layered cake goodness.
Why not bake your own Cara the Unicorn Cake for Pride Month? Follow the steps below to make your own amazing colourful creamy cake explosion!
For the Cake:
Vanilla cake, in 6 6-inch layers
For the Frosting:
6 cups of cream cheese frosting
Food colouring: purple, blue, green, yellow, orange, pink and black
For the Magic:
340 g rainbow sprinkle explosion mix
115 g star-shaped sprinkles, for the explosion
1 sugar ice cream cone for her horn
1 tablespoon edible gold paint
28 g white chocolate, for her ears
White nonpareils (optional) for her coat
BAKE THE CAKE
Preheat your oven to 175°C.
Combine the flour, baking powder and salt in a large bowl and whisk until they are really mixed together. In a separate bowl, use an electric mixer on medium speed to blend the butter and sugar together, until they become fluffy. Add the eggs, to the butter-sugar mixture, with the mixer on medium speed. Mix about one-third of your dry ingredients into the butter-sugar-egg mixture, then blend in half of the milk, always mixing on medium speed. Mix in the second third of the dry ingredients, then the remaining milk mixture. Stop the mixer for a few seconds and use a spatula to push down anything sticking to the sides of the bowl as you go, then mix in the last of the flour mixture. Divide the batter evenly into six portions (about 250 g of batter). Colour the batter individually in rainbow colours. Spray six 6-inch round baking pans with cooking spray, then pour the coloured batter to the greased pans. Bake the cakes two at a time for 16 minutes. Let the cakes cool in the pans for 5 to 10 minutes. Then cut the 2-in hole in all but 1 of the layers, build with frosting and fill with sprinkles. Then coat the outside thoroughly with white frosting.
MAKE THE FROSTING
Dye about 135 g of frosting each pink, purple, blue, green, yellow, and orange (for the mane), and 67 g of it black for the face. (You’ll want at least 534 g of coloured frostings for her mane: You don’t have to use all the colours shown here.) Remember, when colouring frosting, start with a drop of colour and add more until it is as bright as you want it to be. For the mane colours, it’s easiest to fill several different piping bags with the coloured frostings, so that you can easily have them all on hand to pipe swirls in the pattern you like. The rest of the frosting will stay white, for frosting the cake and filling the layers.
MAKE THE MAGIC
Make the horn: Paint the ice cream cone gold using your edible gold paint. Next, make the white chocolate ears: Melt the white chocolate, then form the melted chocolate into big teardrops, about 5 cm tall. Once the ears have cooled, flip them over so you have a flat surface, then use a clean paintbrush to paint on a little oval in the middle of the round part of the ear with the edible gold paint. With your fully cooled cake layers, build your cake using the how-to in note 3 as a guide. Don’t forget to add the sprinkles and stars to the centre, for the explosion! Cover the cake in white frosting and coat with white nonpareils, if you’d like.
We use a mix of the open and closed star piping to make the beautiful ridged swirls for Cara’s mane, but you can easily make them using a plain round hole—either way, practice a little first to get the hang of it: Just pipe on a little circle about 5 cm wide, similar to how you’d fill a cone with soft-serve. Then, to make Cara’s mane, start with one large frosting swirl in the middle of her forehead, right where it meets the top of the cake. Cover her head with a triangle of multicoloured swirls, then pipe on more multicoloured swirls so her mane trails down one side. You can fill in any blank spaces with smaller swirls in different colours. Have fun with it! It’s a unicorn cake, not the Mona Lisa. Give Cara her charm: Position the horn, then gently place the ears on top of the cake, with the pointed side up and the gold paint facing forward. Use a piping bag to draw on the eyes with black frosting: Think of them as just two half circles; you can even use a small round object to make a little indentation in the frosting to use as a guide. (Always do the eyes last, so you can centre them.) Add just a little extra magic: a splash of sprinkles and stars across the top of her head.
Stacking the Cake
Once your cakes are baked and completely cool, lay them out with the tops facing up. (The top is what you see when the cake comes out of the oven, and the bottom is the part of the cake touching the pan.) FYI, this cake is at its very best the same day it’s made. If you don’t have time to bake and then frost it on the same day, you can wrap the cooled layers individually very well in several layers of plastic wrap and refrigerate them. They will last for two to three days. Even after that, it doesn’t really go bad so much as the layers begin to dry out. That’s what refrigerators do to cake—they dry it. But even dry cake isn’t necessarily bad cake: I love cake the day it is made, but slightly dry cake is great to serve with ice cream.
Once your cakes are baked and completely cool, lay them out with the tops facing up. Then put the first layer of cake directly on top of the frosting. In this case, the bottom layer is purple. Cover the top of the cake with an even layer of frosting. Using a piping bag, make sure to squeeze on the same amount of frosting for every layer: You just add on the same number of rings every time. Add the second layer of cake and frosting then repeat.
About The Power of Sprinkles:
Amirah Kassem preaches the power of sprinkles in her wildly creative first book. Inspired by the piñatas of her childhood, Kassem sought to create a cake that burst with sprinkles and candy when she cut into it. Four years later, her food-based installations have been exhibited everywhere from private settings at the Whitney Museum to 64-foot edible hallways at the Brooklyn Museum; while her fondant-free creations have also caught the attention of Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, and every fashion party in New York City.
Revealing the secret to her sprinkle explosion genius for the first time ever, Kassem helps readers unlock their creativity in the kitchen with 35 different cakes. With photography, illustrations and a design to capture the glittery rainbow effervescence of both the Flour Shop and Kassem, The Power of Sprinkles will be the spring’s sweetest book.
About the creator:
New York-based baker and Flour-ist Amirah Kassem is an artist at heart and cake is her medium. She grew up baking and sculpting with her mother in Mexico, where she discovered an appreciation for fine ingredients—and mastered the art of multi-sensory experiences.
- The Power of Sprinkles website
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- Amirah Kassem Instagram