You can make this lovely anniversary cake, even if you're not celebrating a milestone! Flavor the cake as you wish, and if possible, tint the frosting to match the wedding colors. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Total TimePrep: 1 hour Bake: 50 min. + cooling
- ROYAL ICING:
- 4 cups confectioners' sugar
- 1/3 cup plus 2 to 3 teaspoons water, divided
- 3 tablespoons meringue powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 2 cups shortening
- 3-1/2 cups sugar
- 6 large eggs, room temperature
- 5-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 6 teaspoons baking powder
- 3 teaspoons salt
- 3 cups whole milk
- ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS FOR YELLOW CAKE:
- 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
- ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS FOR LEMON CAKE:
- 4-1/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
- 3 teaspoons lemon extract
- ADDITIONAL INGREDIENTS FOR SPICE CAKE:
- 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1-1/2 teaspoons ground allspice
- 1-1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
- BUTTERCREAM FROSTING:
- 1 cup butter, softened
- 1 cup shortening
- 12 cups confectioners' sugar
- 3/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons whole milk
- 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 2-1/4 cups lemon curd, raspberry filling, apricot filling, poppy seed filling or purchased filling of your choice
- Gel or paste food coloring
- In a bowl, combine the confectioners' sugar, 1/3 cup water, meringue powder and cream of tartar; beat on low speed just until combined. Beat on high for 7-10 minutes or until stiff peaks form. (Keep icing covered at all times with a damp cloth to keep from drying out. If necessary to restore texture later, beat again on high speed. Prepare only half of the icing recipe if using store-bought candy roses or edible flowers to decorate.)
- ROSES: Divide icing in half; set half aside. If using store-bought roses, refer to photo for position and attach roses to top of cake using a dab of icing. If making icing roses, cut a hole in the corner of pastry or plastic bag; insert round tip # 12 and fill with remaining icing. Holding the bag straight up, pipe a dome-shaped mound or icing on the flower nail.
- With petal tip #103 and icing, hold pastry bag with narrow end farther away from the rose tip and turning the nail, pipe a row of three standing petals. Pipe a second row of petals, holding the narrow tip end at a greater angle. Repeat for a third row.
- Gently slide scissor ends underneath rose and remove it from nail to waxed paper; let dry completely. Repeat with remaining icing to make 20-22 roses. (Flowers can be made several weeks in advance and stored in an airtight container.)
- NUMERALS AND CAKE TOPPER: Set aside 1/2 cup of reserved icing. With round tip #4 and remaining reserved icing, pipe at least ten 3/4-in.-square "25"s, making sure to connect the two and five at the base of each.
- For cake topper, place pattern of your choice under waxed paper; tape both to work surface. Completely outline edges; let dry for 10 minutes. To reserved 1/2 cup icing, stir in remaining 2-3 teaspoons water to thin. Fill in outline of cake topper with thinned icing, using the same tip. Let dry completely, thin place in an airtight container to store before use.
- CAKE: Line two greased 12-in. round baking pans with parchment or waxed paper; grease and flour paper and set aside. In a bowl, cream shortening and sugar. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each. Combine the flour, baking powder and salt; add to the creamed mixture alternately with the milk. Stir in additional cake ingredients based on the desired cake flavor. Pour into prepared pans. Bake at 350° for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely.
- FROSTING: In a large bowl, cream the butter, shortening and confectioners' sugar until well combined. Beat in milk, vanilla and salt until mixture becomes light and fluffy.
- ASSEMBLING: Split each cooled cake into two horizontal layers. Place bottom layer on serving plate; spread with a thin layer of frosting. Top with 3/4 cup filling of your choice. Spread a thin later of frosting over the bottom of next layer; place cake, frosted side down, over filling. Repeat layers twice. Top with remaining cake layer.
- Set aside 3 cups frosting. Tint remaining frosting with color of your choice; set aside 1/2 cup. Spread remaining tinted frosting over top and sides of cake. Place reserved tinted frosting in a pastry or plastic bag with round tip #4. Pipe lettering and outlines over cake topper. Let dry.
- FINISHING: Place reserved white frosting in a pastry bag with star tip #21. Pipe eight vertical columns around sides of cake. With the same tip, pipe a shell border around top and bottom of cake.
- Just before serving, use small dabs of frosting to attach numerals between columns and roses at top of columns. Stand cake topper up in center of cake; continue to hold while piping two large dollops of frosting on either side of cake topper. Using leaf tip #69, pipe leaves around cluster of roses. (Dried decorations will collapse upon refrigeration. Remove to save.)