Talk about your blockbuster recipes, this amazing cake, featured in the current 85th anniversary collector’s edition of Chatelaine, is popping up everywhere, from Pinterest to wedding showers. Surprisingly easy to make and decorate — for such an impressive-looking cake, we promise it’s even easier to eat! Find our cooking club pics from our strawberry challenge here.
Show us your baking prowess. Create and ice the cake, then post your photos so that we can all oooh and ahhh.
Vanilla cake in pink ombré
1 hour 25 min
(plus 55 min cooling time)
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
- 3/4 tsp salt
- 2/3 cups unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/2 tsp vanilla
- 1 cup milk
- pink gel food colouring
- 1 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 1 tsp vanilla
- 4 cups icing sugar
- 1/4 cup milk
- pink gel food colouring
- Preheat oven to 350F. Lightly oil or spray 4 6-in. round cake pans and line bottoms with parchment.
- Stir flour with baking powder and salt in medium bowl. Beat butter with granulated sugar in large bowl, with an electric mixer on medium, until fluffy. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating well and scraping down sides of bowl as needed. Beat in 1 tsp vanilla. Reduce speed and beat in one- third of flour mixture, then add half the milk. Repeat, ending with flour mixture.
- Divide batter into 4 bowls (about 1 cup each). Set 1 portion aside (do not colour). Add varying amounts of food colouring to remaining 3 portions, to create 3 shades of pink. Scrape each bowl of batter into a prepared pan.
- Bake in centre of oven until a cake tester inserted in centre of cakes comes out clean, 20 to 25 min. Cool in pans on a rack for 10 min, then turn cakes out onto rack. Remove parchment. Cool completely, about 30 min.
- Beat 1 cup butter in a large bowl, with an electric mixer on medium, until creamy, 1 min. Add 1 tsp vanilla and 1 cup icing sugar. Beat for 1 min. Reduce speed and beat in remaining sugar in 3 parts, alternating with milk (in 2 parts) and ending with sugar. Beat on medium-high, scraping down sides of bowl as needed, until fluffy and smooth, 1 to 2 min.
- Assemble cake by setting the darkest pink layer on a cake stand. Lay short strips of parchment under edges of cake to protect the stand. Spread with 1/2 cup icing. Continue with remaining layers and icing, with white layer on top. Spread a thin layer of icing on sides and top of cake. Refrigerate until icing is firm, about 15 min.
- Divide remaining icing into 4 bowls. Set 1 portion aside (do not colour). Add varying amounts of food colouring to remaining 3 portions, to create 3 shades of pink. Spread the darkest pink icing around the bottom quarter of the cake. Spread the next-darkest shade of icing above the first layer of icing, then continue with remaining icing. Spread white icing on top of the cake. Garnish with silver dragées. Remove parchment.
Gel colouring goes a long way. Use toothpicks dipped into the gel to get a small amount. Build colours by adding a little bit of gel at a time. (See our how-to video!)
How to post your pic?
Once you have your photo, you can post it one of three ways (make sure you’re not on a private setting):
Follow us on Instagram, then post your photo using @ChatelaineKitchen
Like us on Facebook, then message us your photo
Follow us on Twitter, then tweet us your photo with the hashtag #ChatelaineKitchen
Email us your picture at firstname.lastname@example.org
Get your photos posted by next Thursday at noon to be considered for the club’s gallery the following day, which will be featured with the next week’s recipe.
Quick photo tips: Don’t use a flash, natural light is best. Just place your plate near a window and shoot away. Don’t bother using props — they’ll detract from the featured food. Overhead is always nice, close-ups work well, and get in close so we can see what’s cookin’! The larger the photo, the better.