Tag Archives: Birthday Cake

confetti cake with pink icing

This Confetti Sheet Cake With Pastel Frosting is Straight-Up Magical

We’re not lying when we say this dessert is magical. The cake recipe is absurdly moist and tender. And the pastel frosting? It’s basically the silky smooth love child of Swiss meringue buttercream and whipped cream. Also, the icing is substantially less sweet than the traditional butter and icing sugar mixture, so you can eat more than one slice. Plus those rainbow sprinkles! So, yeah, it’s straight-up magical.

confetti cake with pink icing

 

Confetti Sheet Cake With Magic Pastel Frosting

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Cool Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours
Servings: 10 to 12

Ingredients:

Cake
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 ¼ tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
3 eggs, room temperature
3 egg whites (here’s an idea on what to do with the extra 3 yolks!)
1 ¾ cups granulated sugar
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup whole milk or 2% milk
½ cup unsalted butter, cubed
¼ cup vegetable oil
4 Tbsp rainbow sprinkles

Frosting
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup whole milk or 2% milk
2/3 cup granulated sugar
¼ tsp salt
¾ cup unsalted butter, cubed and softened
Gel food colouring
2 tsp rainbow sprinkles

confetti cake with pink icing ingredients

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Spray a 9 x 13-inch baking pan with cooking spray and line with parchment paper with slight overhang on the long sides.

2. In bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.

3. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with a whisk attachment, beat eggs, egg whites, sugar and vanilla on medium-high speed until thick and batter falls into a ribbon pattern, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in flour mixture until just combined.

Related: The Easiest Sheet Pan Dessert Recipes to Feed Your Family

4. Meanwhile, heat milk in small saucepan over medium-low heat until just hot. Remove from heat; stir in butter and oil until melted. Stir into flour mixture until just combined. Stir in sprinkles.

batter for confetti cake with pink icing

5. Scrape batter into prepared pan, spreading evenly. Bake until edges are lightly brown and a toothpick inserted into centre of the cake comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Let cool in pan 15 minutes. Transfer to rack right side up and let cool completely, 45 minutes.

6. In medium saucepan, whisk together flour and milk for the frosting, until smooth. Place over medium heat and whisk constantly until thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat; whisk in sugar and salt. Scrape into a wide shallow plate to cool (stir until slightly warm).

Related: The Price of a Slice: Breaking Down the Costs of Cake

7. Beat butter in bowl of standing mixer fitted with paddle attachment on medium-low for about 5 minutes. Scrape the bottom; beat 1 minute. Gradually add cooled flour mixture, 2 spoonfuls at a time on medium-low until combined. Scrape bottom; beat until smooth.

confetti cake icing in mixing bowl

8. Switch to whisk attachment and whip on low just to combine. Increase speed to medium-high and whip until silky and light. Frosting should have an airy consistency. Add desired food colour, stirring until incorporated. Spread on cake immediately with offset spatula to create swoops and pipe shapes (if desired) using a piping bag fitted with a star or crown piping tip. Add rainbow sprinkles.

Tip: Don’t be alarmed if the frosting feels stiff or looks curdled, your flour mixture was likely too cold. To warm, set the mixing bowl over a pot of simmering water until the edges start to melt; then rewhip. If the frosting looks loose, it’s likely too warm. Refrigerate for 10 minutes, stir and then rewhip until silky.

confetti cake with pink icing

Tip: When using gel food colouring, use the end of a toothpick to dip into colour and then into frosting. Stir or whip until combined and repeat if needed for desired colour. A little goes a long way.

Want more fun, colourful baking recipes? Try these white chocolate funfetti cookies or these perfect lemon meringue cupcakes.

This Sweet Honeycomb Cake Involves a Genius Decorating Technique

This un-bee-lievably cute cake is a total show-stopper, and is actually easy to execute, whether served at a birthday party, summer backyard bash (like afternoon tea!) or even a baby shower. The secret decorating tool this cake requires? Bubble wrap! It’s used to create the playful honeycomb decor that embellishes the dessert.

Melted yellow candy or coating chocolate is transferred to a sheet of bubble wrap to cool, creating a large sheet of chocolate with little pockets. Once the “honeycomb” has set, a hexagonal cookie cutter is used to punch out each honeycomb before adorning the cake. This technique can be applied to any cake of your choice, but it’s especially fitting for a tender lemon almond version with honey cream cheese frosting. Trust us when we say this darling dessert will be the buzz of any occasion.

Lemon Almond Cake with Honey Cream Cheese Frosting

Ingredients:

Lemon Almond Cake
1 ½ cup granulated sugar
Zest of one lemon
¾ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
4 eggs, room temperature
1 ¼ cup all-purpose flour
¾ cup almond flour
2 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
¾ cup sour cream
½ cup fresh lemon juice
1 tsp pure vanilla extract

Honey Cream Cheese Frosting
12 Tbsp cream cheese, room temperature
¾ cup unsalted butter, room temperature
4-5 cups confectioners sugar
¼ cup honey
1-2 Tbsp whole milk
2 tsp vanilla extract

Honeycomb Candy Decor
1 cup yellow candy melts/coating chocolate
Oil-based food colouring (optional)
Bubble wrap

Directions:

Honeycomb Candy Decor
1. Melt candy melts as directed but instructions on packaging in a microwave-safe bowl.

2. While the melted candy melts are still warm, use a spatula or spoon to carefully spread a thick even layer of the candy onto the textured side of the bubble wrap.

3. Let candy layer harden before using a hexagonal cookie cutter to cut out the honeycomb pieces. Alternatively, you can break the honeycomb pieces into shards by hand.

Honey Cream Cheese Frosting
1. Using an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter together until smooth. With the mixer on low, mix in the remaining ingredients until just combined. Beat on high until fluffy. Add more or less milk until desired consistency is reached.

Lemon Almond Cake
1. Preheat oven to 350°F and grease three 6-inch cake pans.
2. In a medium sized bowl, rub together the lemon zest and sugar with your hands, until sugar becomes fragrant. Set aside.
3. In a stand mixer with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and sugar until mixture becomes light and fluffy. Add in the eggs, one at a time, and mix until well-combined.
4. In a separate bowl, combine flour, almond flour, baking powder and salt. Whisk together.

5. In large measuring cup, combine the sour cream, lemon juice and vanilla extract.
6. Add half the dry ingredients and half of the wet ingredients to the butter-sugar mixture. Mix together lightly. Add the remainder of the ingredients and mix until combined.
7. Bake the 3 separate cake layers for 33–35 minutes, until a skewer inserted into the middle of each comes out clean.
8. Allow cake layers to cool completely before assembling, frosting and decorating. Then slice, and serve!

Don’t let your cake baking skills stop there. Try your hand at this easy berry, lemon & tahini pound cake or master one of these 25 summer desserts from The Pioneer Woman.

Anna-Olson-Birthday-Cake-tile

Here’s the Cake Anna Olson Bakes for Her Birthday – and Why You Should, Too!

Everybody loves birthday cake! And why not? A birthday cake means there is a celebration, and someone is being honoured, and best of all if that person is YOU!

My birthday is May 8th, falling very near or sometimes right on Mother’s Day, so there are now two reasons to bake a cake.  The question is: what type of cake to make?  You’ve seen me make every possible type of cake, but are you curious which are my favourites?  Here are a few things about me and my love of cake, and some guiding tips that I follow:

Cake vs. Cupcake

Cupcakes were always my choice growing up, and ballerinas were my “thing”. My Mom had a set of plastic ballerina figurines that she would top each cupcake with for years.

Remember regular layer cake batters don’t always adapt well to cupcakes.  Often wet batters will stick to the paper liners on cupcakes instead of peeling away easily.  If you want a cupcake, choose a cupcake recipe.

Chocolate-Spice-Cupcakes
Chocolate Spice Cupcake with Chocolate “Swirl” Frosting

Tip: When baking cake layers, whether round or square, use cake pans with sides that are a straight 90° from the bottom.  Some cake pans have angled sides (for the only reason that they nest well for shipping) but when layers are assembled, the cake won’t have straight sides, and the angle is noticeable when the cake is sliced. I’ve designed my Anna Olson Kitchen cake pans specifically with this in mind.

Choosing Your Cake Flavour

I love the classically named cakes, with their defined flavour & filling combinations:


Black Forest Cake – chocolate cake, cherry filling and whipped cream frosting

Dobos-TorteDobos Torte – thin layers of nut sponge with chocolate buttercream and a caramelized sugar “fan” on top

Opera-TorteOpera Torte – sponge, ganache and mocha buttercream

I also like watching cake flavour and decor trends, including “naked” cakes, confetti cakes, and I am going through a serious waffle cake phase right now.

I don’t repeat birthday cakes – I change it up every year, and I rarely choose a chocolate cake.

When to Bake Your Cake

Because I’d like to be a guest at my own birthday party, I plan on baking the cake layers two days ahead (or baking and freezing further ahead) and making the fillings and frosting the day before, and assembling then.

Tip: Cake layers are less crumbly and easier to slice when baked a day before frosting them.

Anna-Olson-birthday-cake

Tip: Unfrosted cake layers should not be refrigerated (it would dry the cake out. If baking a day ahead, wrap them well and leave them on the counter.  Once assembled, the frosting seals in the moisture, so it can be chilled and stay fresh.

How Long Will Your Cake Sit Out?

If the weather is nice (and you went to a deal of effort), you’ll want to show off the cake and let it sit out at room temperature (out of direct sunlight).

Tip: Frosting and fondants that have food colouring added fade when exposed to direct sunlight. Take care where the cake is placed for display, and adding a little glycerin (available where you buy cake decorating supplies) to your frosting or fondant will help preserve the colour.

So you need to choose fillings and frosting that suit:

Out for under 30 minutes: mousse fillings and whipped cream frostings are fine.

Out for 30-90 minutes: Curd fillings, fruit fillings, cream cheese frostings and chocolate ganache can handle sitting out for longer.

Out for 90+ minutes: Swiss buttercream cakes, fondant covered cakes, and cupcakes can sit out longer.  Italian buttercream is the most stable frosting, which is why it is a favourite choice of pastry chefs for wedding cakes.

Anna’s Birthday Cake

So now that we’ve talked about all types of cakes, what is my choice for a birthday cake?  And the winner is:

Lemon-Swiss-Buttercream-Hatbox-Cake
Lemon Swiss Buttercream Hatbox Cake

Lemon cakes are ideal in spring, and I’m also thinking about Mother’s Day – I’ll be celebrating with my Mom then, and she loves a good lemon cake as well.  The silkiness of the Swiss buttercream is sweet, smooth and stable, but is not overly rich or cloying.  I’m not certain that I’ll replicate this hatbox style – I may go for piping spring flowers on top to suit the season.  Now that the Anna Olson Kitchen line carries a box of 100 reusable & recyclable disposable piping bags, and a piping tip set, there are no limits to my decor stylings.

Lemon-Swiss-Buttercream-Hatbox-Cake-version-2

And if you are baking a birthday cake for yourself or someone else, remember that delicious memories are made in the kitchen – enjoy the time spent baking as much as the time spent eating!

 

The Anna Olson Kitchen collection of 48 items of bakeware, baking tools and décor tools are available exclusively at The Hudson’s Bay Company and  www.thebay.com