ON TREND: UNICORN CAKES
Shimmery, glittery and rainbow-coloured, unicorn cakes are one of the coolest – and definitely the most enchanting – of baking trends this year. And you don’t need a magic wand to conjure one up: they’re nowhere near as tricky to make as they look, so it’s no wonder they’re taking social media sites by storm. Gather your kit, follow our recipe and helpful steps and create a fairy tale cake sure to delight all the dreamers – big and little – in your life.
BRING YOUR UNICORN TO LIFE
The first step might not be the most important – in this instance, the icing on the unicorn cake is literally the icing on the cake – but using our Hemisphere Cake Tins can make things much simpler, and make a big difference to the end result. We’ve seen unicorn cakes made from stacked sandwich cakes, and that means a flat top, or worse, loads of cake carving and an uneven finish! Thankfully, a perfectly round, evenly baked globe of cake can be yours with our Hemisphere pans. No carving and no wasted cake, just a perfectly smooth ‘head’ to lay your icing on.
HAPPY ENDINGS LOOK LIKE THIS…
If you are what you eat, then a bit of fanciful cake decorating is about to make you a majestic rainbow unicorn… Our recipe and decorating tips result in an enchanting party cake that’s pure fairy tale – we used ready-to-roll icing for the horn, brought frosting colours together for a mane with stunning effect, and added a dusting of sprinkletti mix for a crowd-pleasing finish that will make any occasion more magical.
FOR THE CAKE
- 625g margarine, plus extra to grease
- 625g caster sugar
- 2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 11 eggs
- 625g self-raising flour, sifted, plus extra to dust
FOR THE FILLING/BUTTERCREAM
- 200g unsalted butter, softened
- 450g icing sugar
- Splash of milk
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 6 tbsp jam
- 1.5kg Renshaw Ready-To-Roll White Icing
- 250g white Renshaw Flower & Modelling Icing Paste
- 2 tsp clear alcohol, such as vodka
- A little gold Edible Silk Powder
- Some Unicorn Sprinkletti Mix
- A wooden skewer, about 30cm long
- A small food-safe cake decorating brush
- Food colourings in yellow, orange, pink, green, blue and purple
- Ribbon to trim your cake board
- Preheat the oven to 160°C/Gas 3. Grease and flour two Large Hemisphere Cake Pans.
- Make the cake: mix the margarine and sugar together until light and fluffy. One at a time, beat in 7 of the eggs, then mix in half of the flour and half of the baking powder. Beat in the last 4 eggs (one at a time), vanilla extract and the remaining flour and baking powder. Divide the mixture equally between the tins and bake for approximately one hour until a skewer inserted into the middle comes out clean. Leave in the tins until completely cool.
- Make the buttercream: beat the butter until light and fluffy then gradually stir in the icing sugar, vanilla extract and enough milk until the buttercream is a spreadable consistency.
- Cut each cake horizontally, spread one of the cut edges with jam and a thin layer of the buttercream, then put each cake back together. Spread the large, flat side of one of the cakes with any remaining jam and a little more buttercream. Put the cake halves together to create a sphere, then trim a small amount from the bottom of the sphere to create a flat base. Spread a little buttercream onto the flat base and place the cake onto your iced cake board.
- Cover the whole of the sphere with a thin, smooth crumb coat of buttercream and place the cake in the fridge for an hour to harden. Set the remaining buttercream aside until needed.
- Ice the cake: roll out the ready-to-roll white icing to a circle at least 40cm diameter. Place onto the cake and, using your hands, gently smooth from the top downwards before trimming any excess from the base.
- Make the horn: roll out a 30cm sausage of modelling icing, tapering it to a point at one end. Starting halfway up the skewer, wrap the modelling icing sausage around the skewer – begin with the fattest end, spiralling it up around the skewer so the pointed end is at the top of the horn. Set aside to harden. Shape two ears from the modelling icing and set aside to harden. When the horn and ears are set, mix the clear alcohol with a little gold Edible Silk Powder to make a paint. Using a small brush, paint the horn and the inside of the ears, then leave to dry. Set the remaining paint aside.
- Divide the reserved buttercream into 6 bowls and mix with the different icing colourings, adding a small drop of colour at a time until your desired shade is reached. Lay a sheet of cling film approximately 30cm long onto a work surface, then spoon or pipe all of the coloured icing on, in long rows, side by side; we did ours in the following order – green, yellow, orange, pink, purple then blue. Roll the cling film up into a large sausage, snip off one end, then place snipped end down inside a large piping bag fitted with a star nozzle.
- Decorate the cake: pipe a mane over the top of the unicorn’s head and down one side. Place the ears onto the cake, then insert the skewer into the cake so the horn sits in the middle of the forehead.
- Decorate the mane with Unicorn Sprinkletti and, lastly, paint on the eyes using the reserved gold paint. Add a ribbon trim to your cake board, and you’re done!
HERE’S HOW THE MAGIC HAPPENS
It really is much simpler than you might think. With only a little effort and imagination, you’ll have a dreamy showstopper you can be really proud of.
- Get round that perennial ‘how do I make a spherical cake?’ problem by using our Hemisphere Pans to give your unicorn her head.
- Smoothly does it… roll out some Renshaw Ready-to-Roll icing, drape, shape and trim.
- Do the twist with modelling paste to fashion a perfectly helical horn, then go for gold with a little edible gold lustre.
- Pink and orange and yellow and green and blue and purple – colour your frosting then pipe a pastel rainbow onto cling film.
- The mane event! Roll up the cling, slot into your piping bag and squeeze…
- What’s a unicorn without a little sparkle? Scatter with shimmering sprinkletti for a magical finishing touch.
Inspired? Then share your bakes with us at @LakelandUK #unicorncake
THERE’S MORE UNICORN MAGIC TO COME
If you’ve made our fantasy filly cake with a special someone in mind, odds are they’d probably appreciate a unicorn gift too. Sadly, getting the real thing is just out of our reach, but while we might not be able to find you an ‘actual, real-life’ unicorn, our Buyers are working their magic, putting together a range of whimsical unicorn-themed gifts, ready for Santa to deliver at Christmas. We’ve had a sneak peek at the range and we’re really excited – keep checking back to our website to see the mythical marvels coming this way…