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Celebrate with an Art Cake

Updated on November 14, 2014
Art Cake
Art Cake

The challenge of making something different

Last weekend I was faced with the challenge of organizing a birthday party for a very good friend of mine. I've known him for about 13 years and we've become very close so his birthday had to be very special. Every year we usually take him out to a nice restaurant and I thought it was time to change things up a bit. I decided that I would throw a nice dinner party for him including a birthday cake that I would make by myself.

Introducing the Art Cake

So this good friend of mine is a graphic artist so it's not surprising that he loves art. As I was browsing through the internet for unique cake ideas, I stumbled upon a video on how to make a rainbow cake. It looked really colorful and fun to make but I instantly knew it wasn't going to be sophisticated enough for my friend so I decided to create a cake that would somewhat resemble abstract art. Mixing colors to get the right hue like a painter would, I actually had a blast making this cake. After putting on the frosting, I added swirls of color on the top to make it look like abstract art which unfortunately didn't turn out as good as my expectations. The realization hit me that I was just not that great of an artist! So to make the best out of what I already had,I added two types of candy sprinkles(rainbow and silver) on the top to "improve" my artwork. The end result was quite festive and cutting into the cake revealed a kaleidoscope of colors that brought smiles to everyone.

Some tips for great results

1. Make sure not to overbake for a moist cake. Insert a toothpick to make sure it comes out clean and it's done.

2. Completely cool the cake before frosting

3. Use food coloring very sparingly and add more if you need to.

4. Don't be afraid to experiment and get creative.

A perfect cake for any special occasion

Everybody at the party practically screamed when the cake came out and I've never seen my friend look so happy about a cake so I felt it was well worth the effort. To be honest, I was afraid that it wouldn't taste as good as it looked but I had nothing to worry about as everyone told me how delicious it was. The cake was such a success that I think this would fit in perfectly with any special occasion. Perhaps it's a bit over the top for afternoon tea or a fancy dinner party but for birthdays, Christmas or any other festive holiday consider making this festive cake. Your guests will be raving about it for weeks!

Martha Stewart's Cakes: Our First-Ever Book of Bundts, Loaves, Layers, Coffee Cakes, and more
Martha Stewart's Cakes: Our First-Ever Book of Bundts, Loaves, Layers, Coffee Cakes, and more

The great thing about Martha's cookbooks is that she makes the recipes very easy to follow so that even the beginner can achieve perfect results. I am a fan!

 
  • Cook time: 1 hour 15 min
  • Ready in: 1 hour 15 min
  • Yields: 8-12

Ingredients

  • CAKE
  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 3/4 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • At least three colors of food coloring such as red, blue and yellow
  • VANILLA BUTTERCREAM FROSTING
  • 3 cups confectioner's sugar
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
  • Optional decorations such as sprinkles
Cuisinart AMB-9RCK 9-Inch Chef's Classic Nonstick Bakeware Round Cake Pan, Silver
Cuisinart AMB-9RCK 9-Inch Chef's Classic Nonstick Bakeware Round Cake Pan, Silver

This is a good and reliable cake pan and because of the non-stick surface, your cake is effortlessly removed form the pan. I have two of these so I can bake two layers at the same time.

 

Instructions

  1. MAKING THE CAKE : Preheat oven to 350 F (175 C). Grease a 9x9 inch pan with some butter or shortening.
  2. In a bowl, cream together the sugar and butter. Beat in the eggs, one at a time combing well each time.
  3. Mix in the vanilla extract.
  4. Combine the flour and baking powder and add to the butter-sugar mixture and mix well.
  5. Stir in the milk until the batter is smooth.
  6. Separate the batter into 6 separate containers such as a large soup bowl.
  7. Make 6 different colored cake batter using the food coloring.
  8. Pour each color into the middle of the pan one at a time while trying to keep each color in a circular shape.
  9. The final batter should look like you have six rings of colored batter.
  10. Bake for 30-40 minutes in the oven making sure not to over-cook. The cake is ready if it springs back when touched.
  11. MAKING THE FROSTING : mix together the sugar and butter with an electric mixer or standing mixer. Mix on low speed until well blended. Increase the speed to medium and beat for another 3 minutes until smooth.
  12. Add the vanilla and cream and beat on medium speed for 1 minute more adding more cream if necessary.
  13. PUTTING IT TOGETHER : Cut the cake into two even layers.
  14. Spread a thin layer of frosting onto a layer of cake. Top with the second cake layer so that they are stacked neatly on top of each other.
  15. Frost the top and sides of the cake.
  16. Add random food coloring on the top of the cake a small drop at a time. Use a fork or a chopstick to "color" your frosting to create art.
  17. Top the cake with sprinkles.
  18. Further decorate the cake until you are satisfied with your creation.

Please Rate This Recipe

Cast your vote for Art Cake

Other Recipes You Might Enjoy

Here are some links to my other recipes on this site.

You might also enjoy my food and travel blog and/or my videos over at YouTube. It would be great to see you over there. Thanks!

What did you think of this cake? What's your favorite special dessert?

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    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 2 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      Thanks so much! It was fun to make too!

    • CatherineGiordano profile image

      Catherine Giordano 3 years ago from Orlando Florida

      It looks delicious and so beautiful I can't wait to try it.

    • heidithorne profile image

      Heidi Thorne 3 years ago from Chicago Area

      What a beautiful cake for either birthdays or holidays! Voted up, beautiful and sharing!

    • CherylsArt profile image

      Cheryl Paton 3 years ago from West Virginia

      The cake is very pretty; it was so nice of you to make a pretty design for your artist friend.

    • Brite-Ideas profile image

      Barbara Tremblay Cipak 3 years ago from Toronto, Canada

      what a great looking cake and idea!

    • Jerzimom profile image

      Cheryl Fay Mikesell 3 years ago from Ladysmith, WI

      How fun! Great job on making this cake!

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @notsuperstitious1: I hope you were a success!

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 3 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @tonyleather: This was definitely fun to make.

    • notsuperstitious1 profile image

      Edith Rose 4 years ago from Canada

      I am going to try make one of these 2 reasons: the grandchildren will love it, and it will irritate the son-in-law who thinks all baking should come from a bakery, but that is a good thing, as he will absolutely not eat any of it, and there will be more for everyone else.

    • profile image

      tonyleather 4 years ago

      This genuinely does look like a really appetising and colourful treat! I will HAVE to try this!

    • LornsA178 profile image

      LornsA178 4 years ago

      It looks so colorful and delicious! I love to have a slice to eat!:)

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @sousababy: hehe. Just eat it. I know you want a slice!

    • sousababy profile image

      sousababy 4 years ago

      Almost looks too good to eat (almost that is).

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Minoru10: Haha. Thanks Minoru

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @zentao: Oh come on, just a slice! hehe

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @DANCING COWGIRL: I am happy to say that he truly did. Thanks!

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Ruthi: Thanks so much Ruthi. I had so much fun making it.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Max Globe: Thanks Max. Tastes good too!

    • Minoru10 profile image

      Michael Yoshinaka 4 years ago from Honolulu, Hawaii

      Awesomely creative and tempting. Oops !

      I gained a pound by just looking and squidliking it !

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Jackowacko LM: Thanks Jack. I know it looks "chemical" so I was scared my friends would freak and not eat it. But it was all fine. :)

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @DebMartin: Thanks Deb.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @favored: Thanks favored1. It was the highlight of the evening!

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Scraps2treasures: Thanks so much. He really was surprised so it was totally worth it.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @ayannavenus: Let me know how it turns out!

    • profile image

      getmoreinfo 4 years ago

      I love this cake, it is really cool.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @getmoreinfo: Thanks so much for reading!

    • zentao profile image

      zentao 4 years ago

      ON a diet now, so cake is off limits. But I have to say, this looks wonderful and very tempting!

    • DANCING COWGIRL profile image

      Dancing Cowgirl Design 4 years ago from Texas

      I bet your friend really enjoyed the cake and appreciated your efforts.

    • profile image

      Ruthi 4 years ago

      Your cake truly is a work of art from the heart! This cake would really be the show stopper at any dessert table. Bravo for you and your friend.

    • Max Globe profile image

      Max Globe 4 years ago

      looks nice )

    • Jackowacko LM profile image

      Jackowacko LM 4 years ago

      Wow, I really love the way it looks and at the same time it looks very chemical as well. I guess I first have to try it.

      What I like most of it, it is totally out-of-the-box thinking. Great lens.

    • profile image

      DebMartin 4 years ago

      Sounds like fun.

    • favored profile image

      Fay Favored 4 years ago from USA

      It's too pretty to eat. What a great food item to dress up a table.

    • Scraps2treasures profile image

      Scraps2treasures 4 years ago

      What a thoughtful surprise for your friend! It turned out so pretty.

    • ayannavenus profile image

      ayannavenus 4 years ago

      Oh looks fun, may attempt it too!

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @lesliesinclair: Thanks Papier. It felt more like I was making art than cake so I had a blast making it.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Nancy Hardin: Thank you Nancy. Most of the cakes here in Japan are also of the whipped cream variety. Buttercream doesn't seem to be too popular here which is probably why cupcakes don't sell all that well here.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Diana Wenzel: Aww you always know how to make my day/ :) If only I could send you a cake. :)

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @cpa13: Thanks so much.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @VinnWong: thanks Vinn. It really was probably the most creative thing I've made in my life.

    • smine27 profile image
      Author

      Shinichi Mine 4 years ago from Tokyo, Japan

      @Susan Zutautas: Thanks Susan. It was so much fun to make!

    • lesliesinclair profile image

      lesliesinclair 4 years ago

      Well, this does look like fun and especially because you felt out of your element, yet did it for a special friend, I can see how it made such a hit.

    • Nancy Hardin profile image

      Nancy Carol Brown Hardin 4 years ago from Las Vegas, NV

      My favorite cake comes from a bakery here; it's not only delicious, but has a whipped cream filling and topping. But your recipe sounds like a winner to me, colorful, festive and fun as well as delicious. Excellent work! :-)

    • Diana Wenzel profile image

      Renaissance Woman 4 years ago from Colorado

      Spectacular! I am ordering my next birthday cake from you. You are a food artist, for sure. More importantly, you are a friend artist. Highest form of art... friendship. I see the masterpiece of you in everything you do.

    • cpa13 profile image

      cpa13 4 years ago

      Very cool looking cake!

    • VinnWong profile image

      VinnWong 4 years ago

      Wow!!! Nice! This cake looks amazing. I must say the aesthetics looks amazing. I'm impressed to see how easily you have made it. I didn't know that you could get this colouring effect by just pouring each mix over one another. Nice!

      This would definitely be perfect for the kids and lovely for the entire family. A show stopper. Perfectly in time for Thanksgiving!

    • Susan Zutautas profile image

      Susan Zutautas 4 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      What a pretty cake.