Thursday, February 21, 2013

Chocolate & Vanilla Polka Dot Cake

I mentioned this cake a little bit when I wrote my post about How-To Make a Polka Dot Cake. But I wanted to be more specific with it, and share the outside as well as the inside, because I think it turned out nicely. (And I have some solutions for the problems that I did have.)

What You Need:
Chocolate Cake Recipe (Either scratch or cake mix works fine.)
Vanilla/White Cake Recipe (scratch or cake mix again, fine.)
Chocolate Buttercream Icing
Vanilla Buttercream Icing
Small Round Cutter (like these)
Decorating bags and a variety of round decorating tips (I used tips # 12, 10, 7, 5 & 3)

First, bake the white cake. I recommend using a cake that is a little more dense than fluffy. The challenge with really airy cakes is that the chocolate batter then seeps in, and it makes your circles a little less circular.

I chose to use only about 1 1/2 to 2 cups of batter in an 8" round pan so that the cake wouldn't be too tall. It's easier to cut if it's a little shorter.

When that has cooled, stick it in the freezer (wrapped in plastic wrap) for a few hours, just to make it a little easier to cut.

Use the medium-sized round cutter from Wilton's Round Fondant Cutter Set to make the cylinders (dots).
Cut as many as you can get out of the cake.

Then, prepare three 6-inch round pans with parchment paper lining the bottom, and baking spray around the sides.
Place the cylinders into the pan as you see in the photo above. You want to be sure that you place them so that when you're cutting the cake, you will see a circle, not a rectangle.

(See my How Not To Make a Polka Dot Cake post for more specific instructions on this.)

Make the chocolate cake batter, and pour it over the cylinders as well as around the sides. You do want to be sure to get some batter on top. It tends to help the dots not rise as much with the batter. And I tried to focus on getting more along the outside edge than the center of the pan.

Bake the cakes immediately! One of the reasons my circles got so invaded with chocolate batter was that I was waiting for something else to finish baking, and I let them soak in the batter. Not smart.

When the cakes have cooled, level them, using a cake leveler-- trying to keep as much of the polka dots in tact as possible.

To make this cake, I then layered chocolate frosting in between each layer, and covered the cake with chocolate frosting. (See my tutorial on How to Ice/Frost a Cake for more information on how to do that well.)

I used my various sizes of round tips to then add the dots to the outside.

I started at the bottom of the sides and used Tip #12 to make large dots.
(Hold the bag straight out from the side of the cake, squeeze until the dot is as big as you want it to be. Stop squeezing before you pull away. If you get little points on the outside, like you see above... let the icing set for a little while, or stick it in the fridge, then you can use your finger to smash down all of the little points.)
Then, just use your smaller tips to make dots spaced between the previous rows of dots all the way up.

It's not perfect... but it's well on its way.
As I mentioned in my "How To" post, I used a cake ball in the center here. I don't recommend that. I would just plan to leave out the "dead center" dot.

Click the Links Below to See:
How (Not) To Make a Polka Dot Cake
Make Cake Mix Taste (almost) Homemade
Icing Recipes and Tips

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1 comment:

  1. dding 1/4 cup of mayonnaise to your recipe will make the cake moister and creamier. Mayonnaise works better than milk, sour cream or more oil, so give it a try. Do not worry about throwing off the proportions of the other ingredients.


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