After the Valedictory Dinner and the graduation and finishing school and the formal for the Catholic girls, there was Arabella’s 18th birthday party. I consider that Carl and I got off lightly in that instead of a massive party with a cast of thousands, she opted for a Champagne Breakfast with 25 of her BFFs. No boys invited and I had a feeling gate-crashers wouldn’t be a problem as they would still be in bed sleeping off their hangovers.
We woke to a brilliant sunny day with warm temperatures and not a breath of wind which was excellent given the event was to be held outside. The guests were to arrive at 10am and we had a menu prepared that included fruit salad with yoghurt, three different flavours of warm muffins and breakfast pies followed with birthday cake. The beverages were a rhubarb and rosewater mocktail and champagne.
In the early afternoon the remnant left and headed to the beach but not before Arabella gave me a hug and said, ‘This has been my best birthday ever’.
Degree of Difficulty: 4/5 because there’s a lot of time involved
Cost: Not a lot for a cake that feed this many. The expense is actually in buying all the food colourings.
(I’ve listed the ingredients for a single cake and provided them for all seven cakes – if you have a commercial-sized mix master). I would recommend making two to three quantities at a time until all 7 cakes have been made. It’s a good few hours in the kitchen!
- 60g butter/430butter
- 1/4 cup caster sugar/1 3/4 cups caster sugar
- 1/3 tsp vanilla extract/2 1/3 tspns vanilla extract
- 1 egg/7 eggs
- 1/2 cup plain flour/3 1/2 cups plain flour
- 1/2 tsp baking powder/3 1/2 tspns baking powder
- Various food colourings. I used Wilton liquid colours in red, orange, daffodil yellow, leaf green, royal blue and violet. (To make indigo I mixed together red and royal blue).
Preheat oven to 180C.
Grease and line a 25cm round cake pan.
Place the butter, sugar and vanilla extract in the bowl of an electric mixer and beat until light and creamy. Add the eggs and beat well.
Sift the flour and baking powder over the mixture and fold to combine. Add food colouring (carefully) and mix carefully.
Pour into cake tin and place on the centre shelf of the oven. Bake for 20 mins or until cooked. Leave in tin for five minutes before turning onto a wire rack to cool completely. Wrap in plastic wrap and place in the freezer on a level shelf overnight.
Repeat six more times until all 7 layers of the cake have been made.
- 750g butter at room temperature
- 9 cups icing sugar (sifted)
- 2 tbspns vanilla extract
- 7 tablespoons of thickened cream
In a large mixing bowl beat butter until as white as possible. Gradually add icing sugar, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla extract, then gradually beat in cream. Continue beating until icine if of a creamy consistency.
On a large cake board place bottom layer of cake, Violet. Spread vanilla cream over top of cake, then add Indigo layer, top with vanilla cream, add blue layer, top with vanilla cream, add green layer, top with vanilla cream, add yellow layer, top with vanilla cream, add orange layer, top with vanilla cream, add red layer. Cover entire cake with remaining vanilla cream. Decorate as desired.
To serve, cut cake into wedges then slice horizontally into smaller portions.
The vanilla cake recipe has been adapted from Donna Hay, Flavours cookbook.