Monday, November 14, 2011

Purple Ombre Sprinkles Cake

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Tomorrow is my birthday, and though I've reached the stage where birthdays don't excite me anymore I thought I would do a fun cake for this week since I didn't have anything else planned. I wanted to do a crazy cake that was 100% just for me, just all the things I loved and have wanted to put into a birthday cake. And that means sprinkles and lots and lots of purple. Enter Steph's crazy purple ombré sprinkles cake with salted buttercream. I've always been in complete awe of all the amazing colourful layered cakes I see on different blogs, especially the gorgeous ones that have the ombré effect. I never though I'd be able to pull off one, it seemed like something that required patience and to be neat and meticulous and I can't do any of that very well. But since this cake was entirely for me, the only person I would be disappointing is myself if I failed so I went for it.
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I've had a really bad week. Really bad. At first the thought of baking while in the middle of this horrible week seemed like a terrible idea but then I remembered that baking is my happy place, my therapy. So I pottered around the kitchen and lost myself in this recipe and it really did make me feel better. I used the most reliable yellow cake recipe I knew of, from my Le Cordon Bleu cooking book. It's deliciously buttery, the batter is stable enough to deal with a lot of mixing and the texture and moisture of the cake works well for layered cakes. It's one of the first cakes I ever made while learning to bake. The original cake is for a 3 layered cake, but I split up the mixture into five layers so I could get a good range of purple shading. I only have one 20cm cake tin which meant I had to bake 5 cakes, one after the other, cleaning, regreasing and lining each tin in between. It took a while and took my mind off my crappy week. And it also reminded me once again that I need to buy more cake tins.
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I used Wilton colouring gel and it worked absolute wonders. I usually find it's way too hard to to get the perfect shade of purple when using red and blue colouring so I saved myself the trouble and got some violet colouring. I am absolutely in love with the effect of the shading, and surprised that I managed to get the gradient of shading right. I did a little happy dance when I cut into the cake for the first time. And I also chortled smugly at the recent memory of someone who worked at a professional bakery telling me that to get this kind of shading between each layer would require someone to make 60 cake layers before they got it right. Haha whatevs.
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I decided to use the leftover blackcurrant jam from my Ribena Cupcakes from last week. I love jam in cakes so much, it keeps them moist and gives it a nice burst of flavour. And it worked great since it was purple too. I used my favourite icing, the simple salted butter icing that I can't stop using recently. I originally was planning to do a crazy bright purple icing but decided to keep it simple and white, to give you the surprise of the bright colour when you cut into the cake. It works so well, as learnt from the epic Whisk Kid rainbow cake that is burned into my memory as the best cake ever. Originally I wanted to cover the entire cake in chocolate freckles because I recently rediscovered my love for them. But when I started to cover the cake in the freckles I realised the cake looked pretty damn ugly, like it was covered in festering warts. Lovely, I know. So I went into full panic mode and ripped off all the freckles and started slapping rainbow sprinkles all over the cake to cover up the mess I'd made. Sprinkles EVERYWHERE. I even found a sprinkle in my belly button when getting changed later. It was a mess, but my cake ended up looking like one giant freckle and that is kinda awesome. It reminded me of this amazing cake from Sprinkle Bakes. And check out the stunning Vanilla Malt Sprinkle Bark Cake Lisa made me! Sprinkles make everything better.
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Purple Ombré Sprinkles Birthday Cake
(makes one round 18cm 5-layer cake, yellow cake recipe adapted from Le Cordon Bleu Complete Cooking Step-by-Step)
Note: Sorry US readers, I didn't have time to measure the ingredients in cups so I could convert the measurements for you, you'll have to convert it yourself or use some kitchen scales for this one! Thanks to Reanna for posting the US conversions for the recipe in the comments below, you can see them here.

For the cake:
355g plain flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
225ml milk
2 tsp vanilla extract (I used 1 tsp extract and 1 tsp vanilla bean paste)
400g caster sugar
225g unsalted butter, softened
4 medium eggs
Purple food colour (I used Wilton violet gel colouring)
Jam to spread between layers, I used blackcurrant jam but you could use grape or strawberry, or double the amount of icing and use that

For the icing:
500g icing sugar sifted (easiest way to sift is by pulsing in a food processor)
275g salted butter (about 2.5 sticks)
Extra table salt to taste
Optional: sprinkles to decorate

Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F) and grease whatever 18cm round cake tins you have (I only had one so I had to bake each cake one after the other). If you only have 20cm cake tins I'd recommend splitting the batter into only 4 layers instead of 5. Line the base of tins with baking paper and grease paper and dust tins with flour. Combine flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl and set aside. Mix milk and vanilla together in a measuring jug.

Using an electric mixer on low speed, beat sugar and butter in a large bowl until blended. Increase speed to high and beat for 2 mins or until pale and creamy. Reduce speed to medium low, add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Alternately add flour mix and milk mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture (I did it by adding 1/4 of of the dry mixture followed by 1/3 of the wet mixture at a time). Beat until smooth, occasionaly scraping bowl with a spatula. Divide mixture evenly into 5 medium bowls (I did this by measure the batter, it ended up being about 300g per bowl for me). Leave one bowl of batter white, then very gradually add colouring to each bowl and gently fold it into the mixture, adding slightly more colouring as you do each bowl so that the 5 bowls give you a even gradient of colour.
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Pour batter into prepared tins and bake each layer for about 15-20 minutes or until a skewer into the centre comes out clean and the outside is golden. Cool in tin for 5 mins and then turn out onto wire racks to cool completely. Prepare the icing; remove butter from fridge 30 mins before starting and chop into small cubes. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter on high with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy. Reduce speed to medium-low and gradually add icing sugar until combined, then increase speed to high and beat until pale and fluffy. While still mixing, gradually add any extra table salt to taste if needed.

Prepare cake for icing, you may need to trim the tops a bit to make sure they are level. Layer cakes with jam (or more icing). Crumb coat the cake with some of the prepared icing and chill for 15 mins. Cover the cake with more icing, smoothing out with a spatula (I use an offset spatula that I keep clean and warm by running under hot water to get it smoother). If decorating with sprinkles, it can get pretty messy so place your cake in a large container that will catch any of the sprinkles that will run off the cake as you try to stick them on the sides of the cake. Serve cake at room temperature, store cake in the fridge in an airtight container.
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209 comments:

  1. Oh, wow! It looks AMAZING! :D

    Hope you start the week off with a big smile!

    Miki.

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  2. Happy Birthday for tomorrow Steph! What a special cake, absolutely beautiful! That person has no idea what they are talking about lol, 60 years? really? I guess one must love sweet things and cakes as much as you do to get it right;)

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  3. Happy birthday for tomorrow Steph! This cake definitely sums you up perfectly, I love the gradual shading of purple, so pretty... I think you need to treat yourself with a few more cake tins, it is your birthday afterall :)

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  4. :O so beautiful... I am in love with the colours, and the SPRINKLES!!

    And Happy Birthday!!

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  5. I've been quietly following your blog for months, but your birthday deserves a comment! Happy birthday! I'm sorry you've had a horrible week, I hope things get better.
    Honestly, I'm so glad you made this cake because it made my week a lot brighter! I adore your blog and the recipes you create, can't wait till I have some spare time to try them.
    In teh meantime, can I ask, how do you get the icing so flat and perfect on your cakes? It looks cemment-leveler flat! Could you maybe do a post on just that? aka How to ice cakes perfectly?
    Thank you!

    xox

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  6. wow.. that looks amazing! very pretty and i love the sprinkles :) HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

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  7. Steph, this looks AMAZING!!!!!!! I can't believe how neat and perfect and gorgeous it looks!xo

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  8. Sarah - Thank you so much for your comment, it made my week brighter the way this cake made yours :) I've only recently been getting slightly better icing cakes with a lot of practice. I'm definitely no authority on it, but I found Whisk Kid's tutorial on how to ice a cake extremely useful, you should check it out: http://www.whisk-kid.com/2011/02/how-to-frost-cake.html

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  9. Many thanks! I just finished watching the video of her on Martha Stewart with the rainbow cake! x

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  10. Happy birthday Steph! The cake looks perfect!!

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  11. That looks absolutely beautiful! So so pretty. happy birthday for tomorrow :)

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  12. I don't know if my previous comment got deleted when I was half way through writing it.

    Steph, this cake is AMAZING!!!! I can't believe how neat and perfect it looks!! Gorgeous!!

    I'm sorry you've had such a crappy week. I'm glad making this masterpiece distracted you and cheered you up! This is definitely going to be a recipe I try very soon!!! I don't think I've got the patience to use 1 tin and wash it 5 times, so will try to find some cheap tins somewhere so I can make this. I've been wanting to do a layered cake and although I love the rainbow cakes to look at, I think your version looks so much more grown up and more appetizing! I will definitely try it!

    Happy Birthday for tomorrow. Hope the coming week (and year!) is full of happiness.

    Amyxoxo

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  13. Aww, purple is my fave colour, too. Happy birthday, Steph!

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  14. Freaking FREAKING beautiful.. Show stopper marvellous piece of art!! Not a flaw in sight. You've seriously gotten so good at your craft. And I'm sure you'll only keep getting better. I hope you never stop baking/blogging!

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  15. Happy Birthday Steph! that cake is AMAZING!

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  16. This looks stunning! Happy birthday to you and what a great gift for yourself. The awesome soothe of baking and then you get to devour it all to yourself. Win/win!!

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  17. HAPPY BIRTHDAY! This cake is gorgeous! I love the gradual shading. I'm glad making it helped you feel better. I'm like that with baking, too.



    Also, thanks for the mention <3

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  18. Oh wow, this cake looks incredible! I kind of want to try making this myself now.

    Hope you have an amazing birthday!

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  19. Happy birthday for tomorrow! I love love love this cake, I think I need to get my hands on some of that violet food colouring! And I reckon you can never go to crazy with the sprinkles hehe

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  20. I love the sprinkles and I love that you found one in your belly button - that's dedication!

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  21. Ah that looks delicious and beautiful! I have got to make an ombre cake sometime. Thanks for sharing!

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  22. Whoa, a totally gorgeous cake! This is lovely...what a great cake for a celebration!

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  23. This is amazing! I've been wanting to try a colored layer cake for a while! I'm sure the freckles did not quite look as bad as festering warts but your sprinkles definitely look magical. I am so impressed, and happy birthday too!

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  24. Happy Birthday Steph!!

    What an AMAZING CAKE!!!! I want a piece right now!

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  25. looks tantalizing! really really great work.

    and HAPPY BIRTHDAY! :)

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  26. You're amazeballs! Happy Birthday!!! :)

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  27. Wow! What an effort! I would have been happy with 3 or 4 of those layers! Congratulations on the cake and your birthday! :D

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  28. First off, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

    I say it every time I post a comment but your creations amaze me. I love the perfect layers. I love the perfect colouring of the layers. I love the perfect icing on the cake. It's all so perfect.

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  29. Happy Birthday! That cake looks fantasmagorical, I love the gradient of the purple. I have real trouble getting a nice purple shade out of the Wilton gels so I am very envious of your beautiful creation. As usual, a perfect creation with impeccable styling and photography.

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  30. Happy birthday, and hope the cake was just the beginning of a much better week. Funny how baking can feel like a hassle sometimes till you forget it's what makes the hassle blur into the background. And the cake is just completely awesome and utterly fabulous - a perfect birthday cake, with the combination of subtle shading and gleeful out-there-ness of sprinkles being better than the sum of the parts. Every time I see another of your gorgeous cakes, I'm sure I'd have at least half a dozen squashed experiments to even come close (would love some tips on your perfect icing, too)...

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  31. Oh my goodness! I LOVE THIS!!! What a brilliant idea! So many exclamation marks hahaha! :D

    Happy birthday, by the way! :)

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  32. What a fabulous cake. If your friends and family dont buy you cake tins for your birthday, there is something wrong. Oh and happy birthday!

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  33. Happy birthday!! Hope you have a fabulous day :)

    Such a cute cake. The time I tried out Kaitlin's rainbow I used a different cake recipe and it got quite tough from the extra mixing. Another recipe needed I think - and a Cordon Bleu one at that!

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  34. AMAZING!!! Love, love, love this cake!!! I love all the layers and varying colours.

    Happy Birthday!!! I hope you have a wonderful day.

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  35. Happy Birthday, sometimes making your own cake is the only way to get what makes YOU happy, hope your week improves and keeps on getting better, only a few more weeks until a new year and a new beginning!

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  36. This is so pretty!! Love the different shades of purple :)

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  37. To the most brilliant lady, happy birthday for tomorrow! Your cake is omfg beautiful, awesomely purple and totally you (sprinkles!!!!!). Thanks for being such an amazing friend and can't wait to celebrate with you soon! xxxx

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  38. Happy Birthday! This cake is a masterpiece and yes, sprinkles do make everything better.

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  39. I wish you a happy birthday, but also happy days throughout the year. The cake has been really lovely and wonderful range of tones. Congratulations on all

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  40. Aha a sprinkle in your belly button, so funny! The cake looks really amazing, the perfect purple colour gradation. I hope you had a lovely birthday to make up for the bad week.

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  41. You never fail to come up with absolutely stunning recipes...and make them sound so easy! I'd love to say I'll be giving this a go, but I think I may just have to ogle it from afar and congratulate you on yet another gorgeous post :-) Happy birthday!

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  42. Ha quedado precioso, por dentro y por fuera!! Saludos. Alicia.

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  43. OMG!! so beautiful .. !! what a lovely colors combination.. two thumbs up!!

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  44. OH MY GOODNESS!! The cake looks fabulous. I love this... It's the perfect surprise for a great party! Thank you.

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  45. OMG THAT CAKE IS EPIC! The purple gradient layers and sprinkles are PERFECT! This cake is better than a professional cake. Happy Birthday Steph, you've excelled yourself again and brightened up my week too =) x

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  46. Happy Birthday :) Looking at this cake just makes me smile... it's so cute!

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  47. WOW! gorgeous cake! the ombre coloring is perfect! & good choice with using purple :) anyways, happy birthday & thanks for sharing this awesome cake!

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  48. Amazingly beautiful cake! I love Whisk Kid's rainbow ake too, the image is forever burned into my brain, cuz it's amazing! But now your birthday cake may forever be burned into my brain too! Happy Birthday!

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  49. Happy Birthday for tomorrow! This cake looks absolutely amazing – well done for getting the gradient of colours across the layers absolutely perfect on your first try! 60 layers to get it right? Pfffft. :)

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  50. Baking is my happy place too! this is just wonderful!

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  51. Happy Birthday! I've been a silent follower of your blog for some time but this cake, well, I had to say something. And I do follow you on my google reader. Hope you have a great birthday. And ship me a piece of that cake! NY isn't that far!! Enjoy!! Best, Jackie

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  52. Happy Birthday!!! This is the most beautiful cake! You did such an amazing job.

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  53. IT'S SO PRETTY WHY SO PRETTY ZOMGZOMGZOMG MY HEART OH HOW IT WEEPS WITH JOY! Also, happy birthday :P

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  54. That cake looks absolutely gorgeous! Great job, and Happy Birthday!

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  55. Dude, that looks amazing! Well done! I hope you have a fabulous birthday x

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  56. You've reminded me of a music teacher who used to teach us... she would only wear purple because, her deceased daughter came to her dreams and told her that God wears purple. I think this cake would be perfect for her....

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  57. Beautiful! Also, we're almost birthday twins :)

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  58. Oh wow! This is so pretty. I love the entire cake right down to it's gorgeous colours. You have definitely given me inspiration.

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  59. Amazing!!! Argh I just want to bake everything you put up here, why must I work instead of being able to just do nothing but stalk your blog and bake all day! Why?!

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  60. Gorgeous cake! I would pay for that cake, looks amazing.

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  61. Happy birthday. What a stunning and creative way to celebrate! Your lines are perfect.

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  62. Oh my goodness, this cake looks so pretty! Love the purple color! <3

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  63. Such a beautiful gradient of purple! Happy birthday hun x

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  64. Happy Birthday!!

    Good on you to bake for yourself to feel better. Cake always makes things good. All the more prefect to do it just the way you want for the big day. Your "festering warts" analogy made my sleepy morning.

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  65. This cake is incredibly beautiful, yet so much fun! What a great birthday cake :). I'm in LOVE with the sprinkles on the outside!!

    Happy Birthday!

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  66. I love this!!
    Its so effective and would suit and adult or a child for a great birthday cake.
    Thanks for sharing!

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  67. This is so amazingly, perfectly beautiful. You are so good at what you do and as always, your photography is also amazing. I hope your birthday was as lovely as your cake!

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  68. This looks amazing! How did you manage to get the sprinkles on the sides?

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  69. Happy Birthday! Hope the cake truly makes up for the week!

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  70. I LOVE IT. I think this will be my daughter's 5th birthday cake and her birthday isn't until March LOL She is obsessed with purple and sprinkles :) I will probably do a chocolate frosting with it since she likes it better.

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  71. Anonymous - with great difficulty and quite awkwardly! i'm sure there was a better way but i basically grabbed some in my hands and pressed them against the sides, sprinkles went EVERYWHERE

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  72. Wow! This is my first time at your blog (followed the picture from foodgawker) but anyone who chooses to bake a purple cake is just aces in my book :)

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  73. Hello!!

    I've just discovered your blog, and as I said here, serendipityandkate.blogspot.com, I am afraid you are going to make me very very fat!!! Amazing photos. What kind of camera do you use?

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  74. serendipity and kate - haha i'm sorry! and thanks :) I currently use a Canon 600D with a 50mm f/1.8 lens

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  75. gorgeous cake!! love the vibrant colours. hope you had a happy birthday! it's mine in four days too so i'll have to come up with something for my cake as well..

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  76. Happy birthday, again! This cake is absolutely perfect - and reminds me of the purple phase I went through in my early teens, right after I grew out of my pink phase =)

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  77. OMG, this cake is AMAZING!! It is so beautiful, and puts a smile on my face just looking at it. Happy birthday!

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  78. My daughter will love this so much. Your cake is really unique, I haven't seen anything that is covered by colorful sprinkles, plus the layers are superb.

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  79. The cake is gorgeous! And I totally get it about having a crappy day. I had the same thing today and started making cupcakes, and suddenly I wasn't thinking about it anymore. I totally know what I want to make for my birthday next year though :)

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  80. This is beautiful!!! Makes me want to bake one immediately. The choice to go with sprinkles was a good one. Festering warts, not so much :)

    can't wait to make my own!

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  81. This looks unbelievably awesome! My friends birthday is coming up and I want to try (key word - try) to make this for where but we're both health nuts so any suggestions on how to make this recipe healthier but still getting the same taste?

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  82. Anonymous - I believe a very appropriate phrase to use here would be "You can’t eat your cake and have it too."

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  83. LOL! touche!!!! I will still have to try it because you made it look so amazing!!

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  84. I gave into the temptation. :) Mine wound up being a four-layer cake (because I buggered up the bottom layer, whoops) with chocolate buttercream (because why not!). Given that I don't make too many cakes, I'm rather pleased with myself! Unfortunately, I have to wait till tomorrow to cut into it - I'm taking it to a Thanksgiving lunch (I'm in Melbourne, but a friend's American and the rest of us will hop on any excuse to have a big old feast). I think the kids are going to get a real kick out of the bright purple cake!

    All of which is a rambling sort of way of saying - thanks for sharing this recipe! It's gorgeous, and I had some fun with it. :)

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  85. This looks gorgeous. Would love for you to share this with us over at foodepix.com.

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  86. It's perfect!!! really perfect. One of the most beautiful cakes that I've ever seen! :)

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  87. This cake is awesome. I don't bake much but I really want to try it. What is considered caster sugar and icing sugar? I'm in the US, don't want to use the wrong stuff.

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  88. nom nom nom - you can just use regular white sugar instead of caster sugar, and I think icing sugar is called confectioners sugar in the US?

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  89. I figured it was confectioners but just wanted to make sure. Thanks!

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  90. Just made this for my birthday which is tomorrow. Can't wait to cut into it!

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  91. Oh wow. I just saw this on One Pretty Thing (from Dec. 15/11) and really wish I had seen it when it was originally posted. My birthday was Nov. 16 and I would have really loved this cake for my birthday! :)

    Beautiful cake and happy belated birthday.

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  92. You are fantastic!! Seriously, I want you to be my mentor... your writing style, your photography, the way you slice a cake! It's all so perfect! Definite new follower here!

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  93. You made me make a sprinkle cake, because yours was so gorgeous! See my whole post about the adventure (along with tips on how to create perfectly level cake layers with no cutting and NO WASTE), right here: http://thesexyknitter.blogspot.com/2012/01/flatten-yourcake-layers.html

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  94. The Sexy Knitter - Fantastic, great work! Though I can imagine that squishing your cake layers like that might have made them a bit denser and less fluffy than they were before? P.S. I also had my cake on a pedestal, I meant you can put the entire stand with the cake on it inside a big container to catch the spare sprinkles, I did it again recently and it helped a lot!

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  95. Hello! Happy Birthday and Beautiful Cake! I have two friends who share a birthday and I'm going to make this for them. I know they'll love it. For my fellow American's I converted the recipe according to this site: http://www.traditionaloven.com/tutorials/conversion.html

    I thought I would share so others don't have to do it, please let me know if it needs adjusting.


    For the cake:
    355g plain flour (2 ¾ cups 2.84)
    1 Tbsp baking powder
    1/2 tsp salt
    225ml milk (just under 1 cup .95)
    2 tsp vanilla extract
    400g caster sugar (1 ¾ cups)
    225g unsalted butter, softened (just under two sticks 1.98)
    4 medium eggs
    Purple food colour (I used Wilton violet gel colouring)
    Jam to spread between layers, I used blackcurrant jam but you could use grape or strawberry, or double the amount of icing and use that
    For the icing:
    500g icing sugar sifted (easiest way to sift is by pulsing in a food processor) (4cups)
    275g salted butter (about 2.5 sticks)
    Extra table salt to taste

    Do note that if you're going to use regular sugar instead of casting sugar, use the website to figure out how much you'll need because it will have a different weight.

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    1. Thanks so much for that Reanna! I actually attempted to do the conversion for this cake recipe on my latest post: http://www.raspberricupcakes.com/2012/01/green-gold-checkerboard-cake-with-milo.html and it's pretty similar so that makes me feel better. I hope you and your friends like the cake!

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  96. Beautiful cake! I was wondering, do you eat all your creations or give them away so your waistline doesn't suffer? While looking for Danish/Swedish traditions over the holidays, I happened up the Swedish Princess Cake - google it, you'll find some beautiful pictures and how-tos. I'd love to make one for my birthday but it seems labor-intensive. Eh, I have till October to worry about it.

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    1. karlamcurry - I always eat a portion myself, otherwise I wouldn't really be able to write about how it tastes! But I give the majority away to my friends and workmates :) Oh yes, I love love love Princess Cake, I've always wanted to make one!

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  97. I've made your amazing cake, and it was gorgeous! I've linked to you on my blog - check out the pics of my version www.makes-and-bakes.blogspot.com

    Oh, how on earth did you get the sprinkles up the sides?!

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    1. Helen - Your cake loosk so pretty!! Haha with great difficulty, that's why they went everywhere! I basically placed the whole cake stand in the sink and pressed handfuls of sprinkles up the sides of the cake. It was messy and quite wasteful but I really wanted the whole cake to be covered. But it's not really necessary, all those sprinkles = a very crunchy exterior, which some people might not like.

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  98. Ha ha - that's why I didn't do the sides! I've got one piece left, and I'm about to have it now with a cup of tea :-)

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  99. I too am a purple freak (long story). This cake looks absolutely amazing!! Just devine!! Too die for!!..All your work rocks and the talent you have is just beyond words!! I'm so glad I found you xxx

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  100. I made this cake tonight for my grandmothers 89th birthday! It was so wonderful. It was like a surprise within a surprise. She loved it. Thank you!

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  101. This is sooo amazing!! Is it okay to leave the other bowls of mix sitting there while you bake the other cakes? I only have 2 tins for this so will do what you did with multiple baking/washing. Do I need to cool the tin before going again aand where do you keep the bowls of mix while they wait? I hope I can make something that looks half as good!!!!!

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    1. sojoco - Yes it is totally fine to leave the other bowls sitting on the countertop, I mentioned in the recipe that I only had one cake tin and had to do this. All I did was allow the tin to cool slightly after removing the baked cake, wiped it down a bit with a paper towel, regreased the tin with butter and relined the base with baking paper. Hope that helps!

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  102. I made this this evening for my daughter. I thought I'd surprise her when she came home. Mine isn't even close to being as pretty and awesome as yours. The jam that's in between the layers mixed in with the frosting so it looks kinda swirly. Oh well. I'm sure it's edible!!!

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  103. Hi, I'm planning to make this for a friend's birthday - do you think it would work with an 18cm cake tin instead of 20? will the layers be too thick?

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    1. Lila - If you check the recipe it says you can use a 18-20cm tin, I actually used an 18cm tin myself but I know most people only have 20cm tins so I thought I better include both!

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    2. I didn't have either size tins. I'm not a big baker so I only had a 22cm (the one you can buy at Ikea) I doubled the batch and made 5 layers and it came out great. Now I'm just worrying about how I'll ever frost it since that is a first too. Thank you for the reciepe it's the perfect thing for my Alice in Wonderland NON bithday party.

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  104. Just finished making this cake, it was SO much fun and you're right about the sprinkles! They went EVERYWHERE! I made it for my friends' (twins!) birthday and I can't wait to see their faces tomorrow! Though mine wasn't nearly as perfect as yours! I love your blog and am so glad I found it! Thank you for all your wonderful creations, they are truly inspiring! :)

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  105. LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE!!!!!!!!! Amazing cake too!!

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  106. Wow, that is totally my dream cake too! Great job!

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  107. I made a pink version of this today - it's AWESOME! Thank you for being such an inspiration for this naieve and not very talented or skilled baker :o)

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  108. I made this for my friend's birthday today. It was such a hit, and so tasty! Thanks for an amazing recipe

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  109. what is caster sugar and how do i lighten the color for each layer of cake??

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    1. caster sugar is superfine sugar, using regular white sugar works fine too. read the description in the recipe for how to shade each layer, your batter is for a plain cake and you gradually add more and more colour to each bowl of batter to make it darker.

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  110. I made this cake for my sister's birthday yesterday and it was a HUGE hit! Everyone loved it and was so impressed. Thank you so much for sharing this recipe! I can't wait to experiment with different colours.

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  111. I am seriously considering making this for my office (5 of us have birthdays next week). Any thoughts on how this would be with a chocolate mousse between the layers and chocolate frosting? Our office LOVES chocolate.

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    1. Chocolate frosting is fine but I'm not sure if the chocolate mousse will be strong enough to handle the weight of te cake layers. They are pretty heavy, you can see if you look closely that the weight was enough to squash the bottom layer down quite a bit.

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  112. I used this recipe last night for my practice cake for Fetal Fest which will be in July (my baby shower, I just hate calling it that). I never bake, so I wasn't expecting perfection, but I was pleased with my end result. I would love to know what the secret is to getting a flat cake. My icing didn't turn out anything like this, but it was still good. I'm in Kentucky, so maybe I didn't translate all the sugars correctly, but I tried. Here's a link to view my cake pics :) Thanks so much, this cake is like heaven. http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.858744238010.2221150.50906768&type=1

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    1. Haha Fetal Fest! So glad you liked the cake, here are some of the tips I use to get my layers flatter:
      1. Adjust the oven temp - I use a non-fan oven so it runs a little cooler than most fan-forced ones. Doming will be worse temperature is too hot, so try dropping the temp 5 degrees and baking it for a little longer to see if that helps

      2. Trim the tops of your cake - it seems wasteful but just shaving a little off the middle of the top of each cake to get rid of some of the unavoidable dome shape makes a big difference.

      3. Alternate the direction you sandwich each layer - I always start with the bottom layer facing right way up, and then sandwich the next layer upsidedown on top, I find this helps to balance it out better than if you have all the layers facing right way up.

      Hope that helps!

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    2. Jennua, Wilton makes two cake levelers:

      http://www.amazon.com/Wilton-Large-Folding-Cake-Leveler/dp/B003TYDU1A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1334172284&sr=8-2

      http://www.amazon.com/Wilton-415-815-Cake-Leveler/dp/B00004S7YB/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1334172284&sr=8-1

      I have the cheap one, and it does just fine. A lot of people just use a knife, but I end up whittling my cakes down to nothing if I do that.

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  113. I made this for my birthday a week or so ago and it came out perfectly! I loved making the cake mix - so pouffy and fluffy! - and the tips and links you put in really helped .

    I just wanted to say thanks for publishing such awesome recipes and brilliant directions. I'm giving the mint choc chip one a go for a charity bake sale next week - fingers crossed.

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  114. I was wondering what the measurements were in cups and tablespoons rather than grams and ml

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    1. There's a link at the start of the recipe to a comment right above yours where someone was kind enough to convert them into US measurements for you. Here if is again if you can't find it. http://www.raspberricupcakes.com/2011/11/purple-ombre-sprinkle-cake.html?showComment=1326755046082#c6691740065204292823

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  115. Wow, that is just absolutely beautiful! Thank you for sharing, I'm going to have to try this!

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  116. hi! your cakes are awesome and i love your blog. i'd like to know if this cake is sufficient for about 20 servings. making it for my parents' anniversary and we have about 20 guests. if not then what additions do i make to the recipe? a reply would be much appreciated!

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    1. Anonymous - Hmm that's a bit tricky! I think you usually get about 12 decent slices out of this cake. You could definitely try doubling the recipe and baking each layer in a larger round tin (20cm or bigger) so that you end up with a taller cake? That should be enough for 20 people. I hope that helps!

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  117. Thank you so much for this recipe. I made it for my grandma's birthday and not only was the recipe super easy to follow, it turned out just like in your pics! Got so many compliments from the family! LOVE THIS BLOG!
    Ps wish I could figure out how to attach pics to this comment. I would love to show you the end product!

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    1. So glad you liked the recipe! I would love to see your pics, feel free to email me (steph(at)raspberricupcakes.com)

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  118. LOVE LOVE LOVE how this cake looks! I'm sure it's quite tasty too! I have pinned your recipe on Pinterest and plan to make one for my son's birthday party that's coming up. So this may be a very silly question ... but where did you get your sprinkles? I have been searching for the perfect color combination of sprinkles and I cannot find ones like yours! Yours appear to be more vibrant and have lighter colors! The ones I've found are usually a mix of light and dark colors. I just NEED to get these same sprinkles!! :)

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    1. Jennifer - Not sure if I can help you, I'm all the way in Australia and I just bought my sprinkles from the grocery store. Maybe try searching online at cake decorating websites? Sorry I can't help more!

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    2. Oh it's ok! Do you, by any chance, remember the name brand of the sprinkles? If not, no worries! I'll keep searching online! :)

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  119. This looks awsome!!!Totally love the colours and the little sprinkles!!<3

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  120. this is amazing!!!! how it comes I just found you today? !!!! It's such a long way to scroll down you have soooo many comments!! ;D

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  121. I made this cake for my daughter's 11th birthday in blue. It tasted fantastic!! Thanks for sharing!!

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    1. I would love to see pictures of it in blue!

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    2. I made a blue gradient cake with blue ombre frosting!
      Check it out on my blog:
      A Blog About Nothing

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  122. I LOVE this cake, and I'm planning to make it next month for my soon-to-be sister-in-law's bridal shower. I haven't tried this icing recipe, and the name makes me nervous. Is it basically just traditional tasting buttercream?

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    1. LOL no reason to be nervous about it! It's just regular frosting that uses salted butter instead of unsalted. It's one I use all the time because the salt helps balance against all the sweetness of the icing sugar and the cake. If you prefer you can use unsalted butter and gradually add very small amounts of salt to the icing until you are happy with the taste.

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  123. Hi Steph, amazing cake! Going to try it next week. Am wondering I can cut down on the icing sugar. Would it affect the firmness of the icing? Wanna use it to pipe other cakes too.

    Also, have u used it with cream cheese too? Cream cheese does make the icing pretty soft. I have difficulty making it stiff in the humid Singapore weather. Tks!

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    1. Hi Adelyn, you can definitely cut down on the icing sugar a fair bit as this icing is very stiff. Cutting down on the icing sugar should make it easier to pipe as well. Just gradually add icing sugar to the mixture until you are happy with the texture. I'm posting a plain vanilla bean icing later today that is great for piping.

      Cream cheese does make the icing very soft, I usually add an equal amount of butter to the mixture to help it stay stiff. I hope that helps!

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  124. Just finished making this cake! I am not a baker, and have a rather temperamental oven as so was really not sure how it would turn out, but I had a default chocolate cake to turn on in case of disaster!!!
    Your instuctions were so clear, and easy to follow (and the pictured were such a help), that I am left with a cake that looks exactly how it should...I'm rather proud of myself.
    I used the sprinkles that are softer (the longer ones) to prevent that super crunchy effect that hundreds and thousands do. You are right though...what a mess...but what fun!
    Will email you some pics after we cut it tomorrow!

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    Replies
    1. How fantastic! Great idea using the softer sprinkles, the crunch of the non-pareils is annoying but I had to overlook it on this particular occasion because I love them so! Looking forward to seeing your photos of your cake! xx

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  125. I've just found this recipe and my heart started to beat faster - I think I'm in love. I have guests this weekend and am planning to make this but cover it with fondant icing and then tie a purple ribbon around the middle of it and decorate the top with frosted violets/icing flowers. Thanks for sharing!

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  126. Hi Steph, Can I use Swiss meringue buttercream instead? Do I jus use salted butter and add more salt?

    Tks!

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    Replies
    1. SMB will work go great! I wouldn't bother with the salted bit if you're using it though.

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  127. Hey! I'm a huge fan of your purple ombre cake recipe. I think I've used it ever since I found it. I joke not...
    I tried it out with blue instead and it looked and tasted AMAZING!
    Then I tried it in chocolate, vanilla and lemon curd (I had a lemon craze two months ago) and this is what came out!
    http://tatianah10.wordpress.com/2012/04/29/chocolate-lemon-curd-vanilla-checkered-cake/
    I took it when I stayed over a friends Uni here in England and we all sat around the kitchen table eating it bit by bit with our fingers. Elegantly, of course :P

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  128. Omgosh!! I just made this for my friends birthday tomorrow and it looks amazing! Can't wait to see inside but i'm pretty sure its going to be just perfect :)

    It was definatly messy trying to get the sprinkles on the side but after many minutes i finally figured out an easier way *phew*

    Thank for the tutorial and idea - going to look through your other recipes now :)

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  129. A friend and I made this last night for another friend's birthday but instead of purple, we used blue. Turned out awesome! The sprinkles were definitely a challenge, but it looked so good that it was totally worth it!

    Thanks so much for the idea and the amazing recipes... keep them coming!

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  130. I discovered your blog only a few days ago and when I saw the pictures of this amazing cake, it was love at first sight. The timing of my discovery was perfect, as the 16th birthday of my fiance's daughter was coming and we were planing a surprise party for her...and I so wanted to wow her and to impress my fiance's family. I was so excited when I even found the same food colouring as in your receipe...the uncooked batter, looked amazing! just as in your pictures....but when I took the cakes out of the oven: what a disaster!!! they turned green-ish...I'm not talking about beautiful radiant green, but more like moldy carpet green!!! How is that possible??? what did I do wrong?? can you specify how you measure this food colouring gel? and how much did you use for each layer??
    I still went ahead with the cake, covered it as in the recipe and served it...unfortunately this cake turned into the joke of the evening...and my future mother-in-law simply commented: at least my son will not put on weight with you and your cakes! Nice! :(
    I so would love to fix that and do this cake again, but this time to impress everyone....
    Please help!
    Thanks

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    Replies
    1. Oh no! I'm so sorry it didn't turn out as you had hoped. I've honestly got no idea why your cakes would turn green! To be clear, this is the colouring that I used: http://www.wilton.com/store/site/product.cfm?id=3e30b2d9-475a-bac0-5d5c3db846dfd354 and I honestly couldn't tell you how much I used for each layer, I did it completely by eye, but if I had to estimate I think I would have used no more than 1/2 tsp of colouring the darkest layer. I have no idea what would cause it to turn green, maybe it reacted with your cake pans somehow? I've seen many others who have re-used this recipe successfully, and if you check my latest post you'll see I used the exact same recipe and still got the same vibrant colours.

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  131. This cake looks amazing. It would absolutely cheer me up after a bad day.

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  132. Wow, this is AMAZING. I have never made a frosted layer cake in my life but this sure makes me want to try :)

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  133. Hi Steph
    This cake is AMAZING!!!! I've made it twice now. Once in February as a purple ombré cake and again this past weekend as a vanilla cake with sprinkles inside (based on a 'Funfetti' cake). It was great both times and it is now my go to cake recipe.

    I'm wanting to know if you have tried making cupcakes from this recipe.
    Do they rise much? I've found that the layers in this cake don't rise very much but when all five layers are stacked you get a high cake so it doesn't matter that each individual doesn't rise very much.
    This cake recipe is so great, light and fluffy that I really want it to be my go to cupcake recipe as well.

    I also must say that I LOVE your blog. I've also made the fruit tingle cake and I plan on making the iced vovo cake really soon.

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  134. This is cake is simply beautiful.
    I attempted it over the weekend however the cake came out kind of... tough. Like, not very fluffy. When you add the milk & flour alternatively, should you just mix it through slowly with a spoon, or with fast with beaters? My cake also seemed to have a lot of little holes in it! Tasted okay though :) Would like to attempt it again, but how can I improve the texture of the cake?
    Thanks Steph!

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    Replies
    1. Hi Anonymous - if your cake was dense with lots of large air pockets them you might not have evenly distributed your baking powder through the cake batter. I'd recommend sifting your dry mixture a couple of times to ensure it's mixed well before adding it to the batter. And avoid mixing the batter for too long after you add the flour, just long enough that the mixture is smooth.

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  135. Oh man, I pinned this from Pinterest, and the time has come to use it. This weekend is my daughter's 5th birthday party, and yes, I chose your cake recipe for the occasion! I'm going to do my best to get some pictures, and then I'll post them of the finished result on my blog: happyshabbyhippy.blogspot.com! thanks for posting this amazing piece of art ;)

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  136. I made this cake for my cousin's 18th but instead of the sprinkles as the icing I used your recipe for fruit tingle icing! It looked AWESOME! I was so happy with it, it's my best ever cake!

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    1. Ahh! What a great idea to combine the two recipes! I would love to see photos!

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    2. I have just followed you on instagram. I have the picture of my cake on mine kristyjane78, just add me as it is set to private and you can see the cake there :)

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  137. Wow this looks so delicious! Like a lot of your recipes! Follow you by now ... and hopefully one day will bake this!

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  138. Too pretty! I don't know why I never thought of covering an entire cake with sprinkles before, but it's gorgeous, and the inside is even prettier.

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  139. That is absolutely amazing. I love the gradient effect, so beautiful. New blog to follow.

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  140. Do u have instagram???

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    1. Yes, under the same username as my twitter account - stephcookie

      http://web.stagram.com/n/stephcookie/

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  141. This is the BEST cake i have ever seen!

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  142. me encanta tu blog, enhorabuena, te inviti al mio y si queres hazte seguidora. saludos de lola de blog pomporones

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  143. I'm going to give this a go tonight as a celebration cake for my god daughter. Wish me luck!

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  144. This is beautiful! Good call on the violet coloring--I made icing recently and thought "blue and red = purple, no problem!" The color looked terrible and I ended up converting the "purple" icing to black! Lesson learned for next time :)

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  145. This cake is so amazing that I just had to give it a go. Not quite as beautiful but it took a lot of work. This is how my version looked in the end http://wheellove.tumblr.com/post/38971852071/oh-my-pink-ombre-cake

    Thanks for all the fab inspiration x

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  146. Hi Steph,

    Whenever I bake a cake, it always has a dome. How come yours looks so pretty and level? Do you use baking strip or how do you do it?

    I'm thinking about making this cake for a friend's birthday this weekend. =)

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    Replies
    1. I usually trim the tops of my cakes before assembling them into layers, it's hard to avoid a small amount of doming on top. But you can also try reducing your oven temperature slightly, as cakes tend to dome more if the oven is too hot. Hope that helps!

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    2. You can also make a "hat" for the cake tin from tinfoil, and after the cake has cooked a bit (10 mins or so) but not yet domed, put it over the cake tin - it stops it from doming!

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  147. This is beautiful. Would be good for my daughter-in-law's birthday. She loves purple. I have to work out how I can keep following you. Thank you for showing your beautiful cakes. I loved the daisies on your burnt butter cake.
    Helen S.

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  148. This cake tastes fantastic, light, moist and fluffy. I layered it between fruits of the forest jam and iced it with fruit tingle icing, yum!

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  149. Beautiful cake! I'm Gona try to make it for my 2 year old daughter in two weeks. I hope I'll turn out as good as yours :)

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  150. I'm so glad to have discovered this gorgeous, yet simply explained, Purple Ombre Sprinkle Cake on Facebook (picture and link posted by More-ish Cupcakes). I was first attracted by the sprinkles, but am so in love with the varying degrees of purple in the cake itself. Will be pinning this so I'll always have it on hand.

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  151. Wow I mean wow!! Im so glad to have found your blog...!

    Johlene
    http://flavoursandfrosting.blogspot.com

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  152. Jackie Teoh-ClarkMay 17, 2013 at 11:54 AM

    Just goggle for ideals on cupcakes for my 5 year old son and found your blog. Your cake is beautiful! Thank you for sharing.

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  153. I found your blog through pinterest and think I will make it for my sons girlfriends birthday

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  154. I'm just about to make this, but I realised I have large eggs, not medium! Should I just use 3 eggs? Or maybe 3.5? It's for my daughter's birthday so I really don't want to stuff it up!

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  155. I made my first ombre cake! I loved it. Thanks for the idea :)

    http://jenniferbakes.blogspot.ie/2013/09/pigs-in-mud-cake.html

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  156. Hi Steph, I'm making this for a friend's birthday - looks amazing! How much of it can be made the night before? Should I make the cakes & the icing the night before and then assemble on the day, or make the whole thing the night before & refrigerate?

    Big thanks!

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    Replies
    1. I assembled the whole cake the night before and refrigerated it, just make sure to take it out of the fridge at least an hour before serving it on the day so it's not too hard!

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  157. Hi Steph, any tips for sticking sprinkles (reasonably evenly) to the sides of the cake? Or just wing it :-)

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    1. Yeah it's not easy...just make sure you place your cake stand in a large container with high sides to catch all the bouncing sprinkles! Other than that it seemed to work best when I pressed a handful of sprinkles on the side of a cake at a time rather than trying to 'sprinkle it' on to the cake. Hope that makes sense!

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  158. Hay Steph, I really really want to try to make this cake for my daughters birthday. You will be able to tell that I am not a baker by the following question, so please excuse me: Could I use flour with the baking powder and salt already in it (that is what I have at home) or would the cake work better as per interactions above? I never know what difference it makes and I really want the cake to turn out as well as possible :-)

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