Why drink lemonade when you can eat it in beautiful cake form?
429g all-purpose flour
265g caster (superfine) sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
125g unsalted butter, softened
375ml of milk
2 large eggs
125ml vegetable oil
2 tbsp Greek yogurt (can substitute with sour cream)
1 tbsp vanilla extract
Zest of 2 lemons
Juice of lemons
5 drops yellow food gel
3 drops orange food gel
1 batch Swiss meringue buttercream frosting
1 cup freeze dried raspberries, crushed
2 batches Swiss meringue buttercream
1 tbsp lemon flavouring
Yellow frosting: 6 drops yellow food gel
Egg yolk yellow frosting: 6 drops yellow food gel + 3 drops orange food gel
Orange frosting: 6 drops yellow food gel + 10 drops orange food gel
Peach frosting: 6 drops orange food gel + 4 drops pink food gel
Pink frosting: 6 drops pink food gel
6 lemon slices
6 mint leaves
To make raspberry frosting add freeze dried raspberry frosting and mix until well combined.
Set aside about 2 cups of vanilla buttercream aside. Split the remaining frosting into 5 different bowls and mix in each colour using colour formulations in the ingredients list.
Please note: to make the 6 layered cake in this recipe, you’ll need to make 2 batches of vanilla cake. All other recipes and measurements are enough to put the cake together and decorate it.
Preheat a fan-forced oven to 140C (280F) or 160C (320F) for a conventional oven. Spray three 8” cake tins with oil spray and line the bottom with baking paper. Set aside
Add the flour, sugar, lemon zest, baking powder and salt to a large mixing bowl and mix together using a hand mixer until well combined.
Next add the softened butter and mix on low speed until mixture reaches a crumbly sand like texture.
Add the eggs, milk, lemon juice, oil, Greek yogurt, yellow food gel, orange food gel and vanilla extract. Mix on low speed until no dry ingredients are showing. Scrape down the bowl and mix for another 20 seconds. It’s at this point that you can add any additional flavourings or coloured gels to the batter.
Fill three 8” cake tins with batter. I find using an ice cream scoop to help me do this makes it easy to distribute the batter evenly so that everything bakes at the same time.
Bake for 50-60 min or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. If the pick comes out with wet batter, bake for a further 10 min at a time until fully baked. Allow the cakes to cool to room temperature inside the cake tins and then chill them in the fridge overnight. Chilling your cakes overnight makes them easier to trim and decorate. So I bake my cakes the day before I decorate them.
To trim your chilled cakes, use a cake leveller or large serrated knife to carefully trim the crust off the top of each cake before you trim each cake in half. You’ll end up with 6 layers of cake.
To crumb coat your cake, add a dab of the raspberry frosting onto an 8” cake board or flat serving plate. Use a small offset spatula to spread the frosting around before adding the first cake layer. Gently press down the centre of the cake layer to make sure it’s stuck to the frosting underneath.
Add frosting to a piping bag and frost a ring around the top of the cake. Fill the centre with more frosting. Use your small offset spatula to smoothen out the frosting before you add the next layer of cake. Repeat with the remaining layers.
Add more frosting around and top and sides of the cake. Use the small spatula to smoothen out the top and sides of the cake, taking care to fill in any gaps in between each layer of cake.
Use a cake scraper (otherwise known as a bench scraper) to smoothen out the frosting on the sides and top. Get it as neat as you can. This should just be a neat, thin layer of frosting which is aimed at trapping any cake crumbs so that random bits of cake crumbs don’t show up on the final layer of frosting. Chill for 2 hours or overnight.
Add each coloured ombre frosting to a large piping bag and frost around he cake starting with the pink frosting at the bottom, followed by the peach frosting, orange, egg yolk and yellow frosting at the top. Add more yellow frosting on top of the cake. Use a small off set spatula to spread the frosting around the top of the cake.
Use a cake scraper to go around the cake until the cake is smooth. Make sure you scrape the excess frosting off the cake scraper each time you go around the cake to keep the colours nice and neat.
Use the cake scraper to flatten the top.
Add freeze dried raspberries at the bottom of the cake.
Fit the end of a piping bag with a Wilton 6b piping tip and frost 6 swirls on top of the cake.
Add 1 fresh raspberry on top of each swirl and insert a wedge of lemon in the side of each swirl. Add a mint leaf next to each raspberry. Finish with some straws in each swirl to make it feel like it’s ripe for summer!