Strawberry Birthday Cake
1 batch of Vanilla cake
For this recipe you’ll need 2 batches of vanilla cake.
429g all-purpose flour
265g caster (superfine) sugar
3 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
125g unsalted butter, softened
375ml of milk
125ml vegetable oil
2 tbsp Greek yogurt (can substitute with sour cream)
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 cup strawberry jam
1 tsp strawberry flavouring
2 drops pink food gel
1 cup funfetti sprinkles + extra to sprinkle between layers
1 cup Funfetti sprinkles
12 maraschino cherries
3 batches swiss meringue buttercream frosting
Light pink: 3 drops pink food gel + 2 tsp strawberry flavouring.
Dark pink: 4 drops pink food gel + 2 drops strawberry flavouring.
To crumb coat: You’re going to colour and flavour 2 batches of the buttercream with 3 drops pink food gel + 2 tsp strawberry flavouring. That will form the light pink frosting. You’ll use this frosting to crumb coat the cake and also for the stripes at the end.
Set about 2 cups of frosting aside from the remaining white frosting. You’ll use that for the swirls on top of the cake.
Colour and flavour the remaining frosting with 4 drops pink food gel and 2 drops strawberry flavouring.
Please note: the cake recipe will need to be doubled to achieve the cake in the video. I halved it in the video because most people don’t have mixing bowls big enough in their kitchens to make the entire recipe in one go :0) Let’s get stuck into the recipe!
Preheat a fan-forced oven to 140C (280F) or 180C (320F) for a conventional oven. Spray an 8” cake tin with oil spray and line the bottom with baking paper.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, add the flour, baking powder, caster sugar and salt. Turn mixer on low speed and allow it to mix for a couple minutes to help everything combine well (alternatively you may do this by sifting the ingredients together). Add the softened butter and mix until it resembles a fine sand like texture.
Add the milk, oil, Greek yogurt, eggs and vanilla extract into the bowl with the dry ingredients and mix on medium speed until no dry ingredients are visible. Scrape down the bowl and mix for another 20 seconds.
Add strawberry jam, strawberry flavouring and pink food gel to one half of the batter and mix until well combined.
Add sprinkles to the other half and fold in until just mixed. Don’t over mix because you’ll risk the colours bleeding into the batter.
Add each batter into a separate piping bag and add random blobs of batter into each cake tin. Try to fill them as evenly as you can.
Bake for 50-60 min or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. Allow the tins to cool for 2 min and then carefully flip the cake tins over on to a cooling wrack to cool completely before using.
Using a large serrated knife, carefully trim the top off each layer of cake to make even and flat layers. Try to aim to get them all the same height. An easy way to do this is to find the lowest height of the cake, place a skewer or toothpick next to that point and mark it. As you go around each side of the cake cutting it, use the marked skewer to make sure each cut is at the same height.
To prepare crumb coat, add a dab of the crumb coat frosting onto an 8” cake board or serving plate. Add first cake layer. Use a small offset to add a layer of frosting and smoothen out and layer the frosting on each layer before adding the next layer of cake. Add more frosting around the outside to fill the grooves between each layer. 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 outside of the cake. Chill for 2 hours or overnight
To frost the striped layers fit the end of two piping bags with a round tip. Add light frosting into one and dark into the other.
Pipe around the cake alternating between each tone of pink starting at the bottom until you get to the top. Frost the top as well.
Use an offset spatula to smoothen out the frosting on the top. It doesn’t have to be perfect but get it as level as you can.
Use a bench scraper or cake scraper to go around the cake until it’s smooth. Take care not to move the scraper as you’re going around, keep it steady as you’re spinning the cake. Once the sides are smooth, use the bench scraper to smoothen out the top.
Add sprinkles to the side of the cake starting heavy at the bottom and using less as you work your way up to the top of the cake which will achieve kind of an ombre effect.
Fit the end of a piping bag with a large open star tip and frost swirls of the plain vanilla frosting on top of the cake. Sprinkle some funfetti sprinkles on top.
Finish the cake with some maraschino cherries.
STORAGE: store in an airtight container for up to 3 days (refrigerated and thawed 1 hour before serving).
HOW TO PREPARE YOUR CAKE TIN: For this recipe you’ll need at least one 8” cake tin but preferably three 8” cake tins. To prepare the tin, spray with oil spray. To prepare the baking paper use a pen to trace around the bottom of the cake tin on to the baking paper. Use scissors to cut slightly inside the circle you traced. Place the traced side down onto the baking tin with oil spray.
HAND MIXER: Can be made using a hand mixer (always mix on lowest speed) or a hand whisk. Take care not to over mix the batter.
OVEN TEMPERATURE: If you’re baking at home set your fan forced oven to 160C (320F).
BUTTER: Make sure the butter is very soft for the cake mixture. Theres two ways to do this. Microwave for 5 seconds at a time flipping the butter on each side until very soft (not melted). If you don’t have a microwave run a large bowl over hot water. Dry the bowl and place over the butter for 1 min. The heat from the bowl will create a warm enough environment to soften the butter.
SIMPLE SYRUP: To make simple syrup add 100g sugar and 100g of water in a a medium sized pot. DO NOT STIR! Bring to a boil and allow to cool completely before using.
BAKING TIME: This cake will typically bake on a lower temp and for a little longer than regular cake recipes. I find a low temperate and a slow bake results in flatter tops and caramelisation so that if the cake is coloured it doesn’t change colour and brown. After 30 minutes, stick a skewer into the centre of the cake, if it comes out with wet batter, bake for another 10 minutes until the skewer comes out with crumbs or completely clean.
Cake turn table/lazy susan
Large mixing bowls
Magic Whisk for wet ingredients
Stand mixer (or hand mixer)
8” cake tin
Ice cream scoop (optional)
Revolving cake stand
Cake scraper/bench scraper