At my house, we are heading into birthday season. It kicks off with my mom’s birthday in March and ends with my dad’s in May. In between there are nephews, sisters, best friends and my two kids. We used to have parties in the before times. Now we bake layer cakes, give two layers to the birthday person and save one for us so we can eat it virtually together. My daughter requested a confetti layer cake but shares her birthday week with two of her best friends. She wants each of them to have a layer….with money baked in. Then she will deliver the cakes and together they will Zoom chat, eat cake and likely watch a movie or play a game together. This is what quarantine birthdays part II look like. Her first one was sad and lonely, now we have the hang of this together alone business. Maybe next year will be different?
I pulled out my Dessert Person cookbook by Claire Saffitz. She has really good cake cake recipes. Her Almond Poppy Seed is stellar. So I thought I would give her Confetti Cake a try.
In my head this is a pink cake, but when I read the recipe and look at my photos – its white. Weird.
The recipe calls for three 9″ round cake pans. I have two, but I also have a 9″ spring form pan. So I used that as well since this was not going to be a three layer cake. Grease – I used Pam – the pans then cut a 9″ round of parchment for the bottom of the pan and give that a once over with spray as well. Set these aside.
This cake uses the reverse creaming method. Nothing about this method is typical to cakes but it makes a superior moist cake with a tight crumb. I will forever make cakes this way from now on.
Mix all the dry ingredients (this includes the sugar – strange but true) in your stand mixer on low and mix to combine. Give the eggs a quick whisk with a fork to break them up then add it along with all the wet ingredients to the dry. Turn the speed up and let it go for a good two minutes. You are whipping it to incorporate air. This is what makes it fluffy.
Turn the speed up and let it go for a good two minutes. You are whipping it to incorporate air. This is what makes it fluffy.
It makes a big difference so set your timer. Then add one cup of sprinkles. I went to bulk barn. When you need a lot, buying in bulk makes sense.
The stars are my favourites.
Pour out the batter into the prepared pans. You can scoop, pour or weigh but try to get them even so they bake at the same rate.
Bake at 350F for about 40 – 45 minutes rotating at about 30 minutes unless you have a convection oven – then its fine and will bake evenly. Let them cool in the pan for about 15 minutes. Cake need the pan to help hold its structure. pop them out too quickly and you get cracks or broken sections. Then lay them on a wire rack to cool completely.
While they are cooling make your frosting. This uses a pound of room temp cream cheese – the good stuff not low fat or it won’t emulsify. This equates to two packages of cream cheese (room temp) and half a pound of butter – also room temp. Cream these two together for a minute. Then add one pound of icing sugar, a pinch of salt and two tablespoons of vanilla. Cover your mixer with a clean tea towel and start mixing until everything is fluffy and combined. Chill this in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
I trimmed the layers so they would sit flat on the cake plate.
This is the chef’s snack.
Then place a dollop of frosting onto the layer, spread it around. It is at this point you add money. Wrap coins in wax paper or cling wrap – my grandma always used foil – and lay the coins around the first layer. Mix it up! Add twoonies and loonies or even wrap a fiver – but coins are super fun. Then add the next layer flat side up. Continue spreading the frosting across the top then the sides. Use a bench scraper to get everything super smooth.
I tossed more sprinkles on top but do whatever you like. My decorating skills are basic because it doesn’t interest me to go fancy – that is my sister’s job.
I did the same with the single layer but you could add it as a third layer if you wish.
This cake was delicious and reminded me of birthday cakes in the olden days before people started buying supermarket sheet cakes. I think that is why I thought I didn’t like cake. Store cakes don’t taste like anything good.
The single layer was plenty big. You could even wrap the layers and freeze. Frost them before you are going to eat them. I recommend watching her video first.
Here are the ingredients:
Butter for the pans
5 1/2 cups cake flour (23.3 oz/ 660g)
2 1/2 cups sugar (16.4 oz / 466g)
4 1/2 teaspoons baking powder (0.63 oz / 18g)
1 1/2 teaspoons Diamond Crystal kosher salt (0.16 oz / 5g)
3/4 teaspoon baking soda 3 sticks unsalted butter (12 oz / 340g),
1 1/2 cups buttermilk (12.7 oz / 360g)
1/3 cup neutral oil, such as vegetable or grapeseed (2.6 oz / 75g)
3 large eggs (5.3 oz / 150g),
6 large egg whites (7.4 oz / 210g),
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon almond extract (optional)
1/2 cup store-bought rainbow sprinkles (3.3 oz / 93g), plus more for decorating
Classic Cream Cheese Frosting