I have wanted to make a multi-colored cake forever and I finally had the opportunity to do so at my sister's birthday fete.
Enter: the process
I had these fabulous natural food coloring from Whole Foods (you'll recall the mini cupcakes for my mom's birthday)
So, I made white cake, divided the batter in four and put a different color in each bowl of batter.
My fatal flaw was buying only one cake pan for all four cakes, so I had to wait the 45 minutes to bake each cake before transferring it to a cooling rack and then rewashing the pan and going through the whole process three more times. Had I purchased 4 cake pans, I would have been done in under an hour....at least with the baking portion.
Once I had all four cakes, I made the icing.....a nice hot pink.
You have to carefully slice the top of each cake to make sure they lie flat on top of one another (I learned that from watching Ace of Cakes once.) Then I began icing each cake and carefully stacking them on top of one another. When the all four layers were stacked and I had iced the top....I RAN OUT OF ICING for the sides of the cake!!!!
My vision went from party to pathetic! I needed a solution fast. Gazing out my kitchen window pondering where I went wrong, an overgrown branch of hot pink bougainvillea breezed by and ding-ding....I had an idea that just might work.
I had Mr. P. bring a sand bucket and gather petals off of the branches. Then, I used them to cover the sides of the entire cake.
The result was pretty exhilarating!
After making a birthday greeting on top, we were ready to go!
And when the birthday girl cut into that first piece, she was greeted with a technicolor cake.
I only panicked slightly when I had a strange memory of bougainvillea being poisonous. Thanks to modern technology and Google at the fingertips of most party-goers with cell phones, we quickly got that one worked out. While the petals were not edible, eating the tainted cake was totally fine.