October 18, 2016

Last week was Antonia's Birthday so another amazing cake was in order! We've been wanting to make some of these super cute, colourful meringue kisses for ages so we decided to give them a go on the top of this cake. Another technique we've been waiting to try is this pretty watercolour buttercream, it was really easy yet super effective so please keep reading to find out how! 

Since we always tend to make our cakes simple vanilla or chocolate flavoured we wanted to try something a little more exciting flavour wise with this cake! One of Antonia's favourite things is Amaretto (or really anything almond flavoured) so we went for an Amaretto flavoured sponge alongside a raspberry sponge. To add some extra flavour we added both and almond buttercream and a raspberry buttercream in between the layers!

To get the height and give extra room for the watercolour buttercream, we made 5 layers of cake so there was a lot of cake to go around! If you want to try these delicious flavours but don't want quite so much cake you could just make two layers.


for the Amaretto sponge: 
8oz butter
8oz caster sugar
4 eggs
1tsp Almond exctract
2tbsp Amaretto
1tsp baking powder
8oz self-raising flour

for the raspberry sponge:
12oz butter
12oz sugar
6 eggs
4tbsp raspberry jam
punnet raspberries
2tsp baking powder
12oz self-raising flour
pink food colouring

115g caster sugar
2 egg whites
vanilla extract
food colouring

for the Amaretto buttercream:
2oz butter 
1 1/2tbsp Amaretto 
10oz icing sugar 

for the raspberry buttercream:
2oz butter
small handful raspberries
approx. 15oz icing sugar

To decorate:
3 different food colourings
10oz butter
20oz icing sugar
Raspberries and almonds to top (optional)

Preheat your oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/Gas mark 6 and line your cake tins with greaseproof paper.

To start with the amaretto sponge first beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then, add the eggs, baking powder, almond essence and Amaretto and combine. Mix in the self raising flour until you have a smooth batter. 

Divide the cake batter evenly between the two lined tins and bake for 25 mins or until golden and an inserted skewer comes out clean.

Next, to make the raspberry sponge. beat together the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then, add the eggs, baking powder, pink food colouring, raspberries and raspberry jam and combine. Mix in the self raising flour until you have a smooth batter. 

Divide the raspberry batter evenly between the two tins, leaving some in the bowl (If you have three tins you can bake them all at once). Bake for 25 mins or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. When the first two are baked you can now bake the third layer, make sure to give the batter a mix first as it will have been sat for too long. 

To make the meringue kisses first turn your oven down to 140°C/120°C Fan/Gas mark 1 and line 2 baking trays with greaseproof paper. Beat the egg whites until they form stiff peaks, you should be able to hold the bowl upside down without it falling out! Next, add roughly half the sugar and the vanilla and beat again until thick, firm and shiny. Then add the rest of the sugar and beat again. 

Prepare your piping bag by turning it inside out (with a nozzle already attached) and painting stripes of your food colouring onto the bag. Once you are happy with the amount of colour, turn the bag the right way round and spoon the meringue in. 

Pipe different sized blobs of meringue onto the greaseproof paper and bake for an hour, turning the heat down to 120°C/100°C Fan/Gas mark 1/2 after 30 mins.

To make the buttercream for between layers, first beat the butter, icing sugar and Amaretto together to make a thick mixture. You can add more amaretto or icing sugar if you are not happy with the taste or thickness. For the raspberry buttercream repeat the same steps, replacing the amaretto with raspberries. We would recommend adding the raspberries a little bit at a time as it can get very runny very fast if you're not careful! If it is too runny just add more icing sugar until you are happy.

To assemble the cake, start with one of the raspberry layers and spread a generous layer of the amaretto buttercream on top. Then place an amaretto layer on top and spread with the raspberry buttercream. Repeat this, alternating between the raspberry and amaretto until you've used all the cake!

Now make some plain buttercream by beating together butter and icing sugar and spread a layer onto the cake, making sure to fill in any gaps between the layers of cake. Leave this layer to dry for around half an hour then add a second layer. 

While the second layer is still wet take the remaining butter cream and split some into 3 bowls. Add your food colourings to each bowl to get your desired colours. 

Take a palette knife and roughly blob on small amounts of the different colours all the way around the cake. Now, using your knife, smooth all the blobs of colour into the buttercream. The colours should start to melt together to create a watercolour effect. If there are any areas with too much colour, or not enough just add on some more plain buttercream or more colour until you are happy with the look! 

Finally, take your meringues which should be cool by this point and position them on top of the cake. if you have enough you can stick some to the sides of the cake too! If you want you can sprinkle over some almonds and raspberries to finish off the look!

We think this cake looks really pretty! The watercolour was so easy to do and looks really effective. We love the little meringues too, they look so pretty and exciting with the bright stripes of colour!

We are so happy we decided to go for some different flavours, the amaretto sponge and buttercream was absolutely divine! If you like amaretto and almond flavours you should definitely give this a go! The almond goes so well with the raspberry, its a classic combination, and the raspberry buttercream is one of our favourites!

Thank you for reading this post, we hope you enjoyed it! 
If you decided to give this cake, or just the flavour combination, a go please let us know! 
Leave a comment if you have any other ideas for different flavoured cakes we can try, we are always on the lookout for delicious cakes to try!
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See you soon, 

Love, Antonia and Imogen x

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