Today is my beautiful friend Steph's birthday. I feel so lucky to have met her through this blog when we sat next to each other at an event all the way back in 2009. At the time I had no idea this tiny, sweet Malaysian girl would be one of the most hilarious and talented people I know, and become one of my closest friends. I'm a very lucky girl.
If you read Raspberri Cupcakes, you'll probably know that she loves sky high layer cakes, salted butter, sprinkles and the colour purple. Well, I managed to get three out of four into the cake - maybe a purple one for next year? The last birthday cake I made for Steph was the epic Vanilla Malt Sprinkle Bark Cake, which is still my most popular post!
I had the idea for a Funfetti Fairy Bread Cake a few weeks ago and just knew that Steph's birthday was the most perfect time to try it out. Fairy bread is an Aussie childhood staple, soaked in nostalgia for kids parties of years past. White bread is spread with butter and topped with sprinkles or 'hundreds and thousands' as we call them here, typically cut into triangles.
I had never made a Funfetti Cake, or a 'naked cake' (with icing only between the layers and not on the sides) before, but they look so pretty so I wanted to give them a try. On top, I used extra cake instead of bread, spread with salted buttercream and covered in sprinkles. I used one of Steph's own favourite recipes because I wanted a beautiful light vanilla cake that would allow the coloured sprinkles to really show through.
The hardest part was working out how to transport the cake via train to lunch yesterday! I had originally baked five layers of funfetti cake plus an extra thin layer in a brownie pan for the 'fairy bread' on top. As you can see I ended up only using four layers of the cake as it was already enormous and pretty heavy.
But of course it was all worth it. I was so happy with how it looked and tasted, and the birthday girl absolutely loved it too. We enjoyed (tiny) slices of cake sitting in the park by the river yesterday. The only thing that would have made it better was to have popped a bottle of bubbles to go with it! And then maybe a nap...!
Happy Birthday Steph, I love you to pieces and I hope that this year is the best one yet! xx
Funfetti Fairy Bread Cake
Adapted from Raspberri Cupcakes
Make TWO batches of this cake
- 355g plain flour
- 1 tablespoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 225ml milk
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 350g caster sugar
- 225g unsalted butter, softened
- 4 medium eggs
- 1 cup mixed sprinkles
- 500g icing sugar sifted
- 275g salted butter
- Extra table salt to taste
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Optional: Chocolate freckles (if available) and extra sprinkles to decorate
To make the cakes, combine flour, baking powder and salt in a medium bowl and set aside. Mix milk and vanilla together in a measuring jug. Using an electric mixer on low speed, beat sugar and butter in a large bowl until blended. Increase speed to high and beat for 2 minutes, or until pale and creamy. Reduce speed to medium low, add eggs 1 at a time, beating well after each addition. Alternately add flour mix and milk mixture, beginning and ending with flour mixture (I did it by adding one third of of the dry mixture followed by half of the wet mixture at a time). Beat until smooth, occasionaly scraping bowl with a spatula. Repeat process so you have two batches of cake.
Divide mixture evenly into 5 medium bowls. Scrape mixture from one bowl into the brownie tin, and bake for 15-20 minutes or until lightly golden and cooked through (a skewer inserted into the center will come out clean). For the remaining cakes, mix in 1/4 cup of sprinkles into each bowl of cake batter, and bake in the prepared round cake tins for 20-25 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean. When all cakes are baked, allow to cool completely, and if time allows place in the fridge. When chilled, trim the tops of the cakes with a serrated knife until level.
To make the icing, remove butter from fridge 30 mins before starting and chop into small cubes. In a large mixing bowl, beat butter on high with an electric mixer until smooth and fluffy. Reduce speed to medium-low and gradually add icing sugar until combined, then increase speed to high and beat until pale and fluffy. While still mixing, gradually add any extra table salt to taste and vanilla extract.
To assemble the cake, place one cake layer onto a large plate. Spread icing over the top of the cake, keeping the sides clean. Add another then another cake layer on top, and repeat until all cake layers are used, with a generous layer of icing on the top tier. For the "fairy bread" place some sprinkles onto a plate. Cut rectangular cake into small triangles, spread thinly with buttercream and press into the sprinkles. Top cake with fairy bread slices, chocolate freckles and extra sprinkles. Serve at room temperature. Can be stored in the fridge in an airtight container.