You know that near-miss feeling?
You know, that feeling when something that could have turned out horribly actually ends up turning out okay...or maybe even better than you could have planned for originally?
Cue this cake. ;)
I think this is why I love the look of this cake so much - it just looks like the best way the story of a dropped ice cream cone could possibly end. ;)
For as fun as it looks, it's actually really simple to put together once all the pieces are made! It's an easy confetti layer cake, covered in white cream cheese buttercream icing, topped with a confetti cake pop 'ice cream scoop' and a white-chocolate-dipped-and-sprinkle-covered waffle cone. :)
Recipes and instructions are below! :)
Note: If you like, you can make your own funfetti cake layers - confetti cake is basically just a white/vanilla cake with sprinkles added to the batter before it's baked.
Rainbow sprinkles are a good deal more expensive than the average boxed confetti cake mix at all of the grocery stores near me though, so I opted for a boxed mix for cost purposes. Options! :)
2 boxed confetti/funfetti cake mixes
1 c butter, melted
2 c water
1 T clear vanilla extract
4 eggs + 1/2 c egg whites (I used egg whites from a carton to avoid wasting the egg yolks)
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 3 8-inch cake pans well with butter and dust with flour, or use a baker's cooking spray with flour added. Combine all ingredients and mix for 2 minutes with a whisk, hand mixer, or stand mixer. Divide batter evenly into 3 pans (I find a kitchen scale helpful for this part), and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake layers comes out clean. This took about 21-23 minutes in my oven. Cool for 10-15 minutes on wire racks, then run a knife around the pan edges and invert cake layers onto wire racks to cool completely.
cream cheese buttercream frosting:
8 oz (one package) cream cheese, softened
16 Tablespoons (two sticks) butter, softened
6-7 c powdered sugar
2-4 Tablespoons milk
1 T clear vanilla extract
1/4 t. salt
Beat together softened cream cheese and butter; slowly add in powdered sugar alternating with milk until frosting reaches desired consistency. Add vanilla and salt and beat until well combined.
Reserve 1/4 c for your cake pop ice cream scoop - see below :)
cake pop 'ice cream scoop':
1 white/vanilla boxed cake mix
½ c butter, melted
1 c water
1 ½ t clear vanilla extract
¼ c frosting (recipe below)
¼ c rainbow-colored sprinkles
Combine melted butter, eggs, water, and vanilla cake mix, and bake according to package directions (I used a 9x9 square pan). Cool and trim off the brown caramelized edges. Mash the cake together with 1/4 c frosting until it has an even consistency, then stir in the sprinkles. Form cake pop mix into a large 'ice cream scoop' ball. (Unless you want a *really* bit ice cream scoop, you'll probably have more mix than you need; I froze the rest in 1-inch balls for later use.) Chill in the fridge or freezer until you're ready to assemble your cake.
Note: I used a confetti cake mix for this cake pop once - suffice to say I'll never make that mistake again. :/ Once a baked confetti cake is mashed to make a cake pop, all of the colors run together into a horrid-looking grayish-brownish-green color that looks incredibly unappetizing. Make a white cake and get all the mashing out of the way, *then* add your colored sprinkles. It'll look much better that way, I promise! ;)
white chocolate ganache drip:
1 1/2 c white chocolate chips
1/2 c heavy whipping cream
1-2 drops gel food coloring (I used Americolor's hot pink; use whatever color you like!)
Heat whipping cream on the stovetop or in the microwave until just starting to bubble (don't let it reach a full rolling boil). Pour whipping cream over white chocolate chips and allow to sit for 2 minutes, then whisk until smooth. Add in gel food coloring to desired shade. Don't use liquid food coloring; it'll make the consistency of the ganache grainy and weird. ;)
Additional supplies/ equipment/ decorations:
- 1 8- or 9-inch cardboard cake circle
- Cake leveler, cake turntable, offset spatula, and bench scraper - not all 100% necessary but incredibly helpful!
- Rainbow sprinkles
- 1 large waffle cone, plus about 4oz white chocolate and rainbow sprinkles if you want to dip and decorate the cone :)
- Squeeze bottle for the white chocolate ganache drip
Once your cakes are cool, level them (if needed/desired). This can be done with a cake leveler or a large serrated knife and a ruler. Place a smear of frosting on your cake circle (to keep the cake from sliding when you’re decorating it) and center your first cake layer in the center of the circle. Spread the layer with frosting, and sprinkle with rainbow sprinkles. Repeat the process with your remaining cake layers.
Now you're ready to crumb-coat . If you're unfamiliar with crumb-coating, it's just what it sounds like - a thin layer of frosting over the entire outside of the cake to keep crumbs out of your final layer ;)
Once your crumb coat has set (this takes about 5-10 minutes in the fridge), add your final layer of frosting and smooth. I like to use an offset spatula and bench scraper for this part. Once your cake is covered, place it into the fridge or freezer to set the frosting. This also helps set the white chocolate ganache drips once you're ready to decorate your cake.
If you're decorating your waffle cone, melt your white chocolate (this can be done in a double boiler, on the stovetop, or in the microwave - I'd recommend only using the 1/3 to 1/2 power setting on the microwave though; white chocolate is a little temperamental and can seize if over-microwaved). Dip the top of your waffle cone in white chocolate and tap off the drips, then coat with rainbow sprinkles. Make sure to get the sprinkles on before the white chocolate sets. Set upright in a short glass to cool and set the chocolate.
Once your frosting has had some time to set in the fridge or freezer, take your cake pop ice cream scoop and set it on top of your cake. I positioned mine off-center just a bit.
Okaaaay......ganache drip time! :) I used a white chocolate ganache for this cake – I found my favorite white chocolate ganache recipe so far on ChelSweets.com. I found a squeeze bottle worked the best for this ganache since it’s very runny until it sets, but I’ve used a piping bag for similar drips before. Word of caution – I was a little too heavy-handed adding the gel food coloring to my ganache, and it turned a much brighter shade of pink than I was originally shooting for. I ended up liking the way it looked, but I’ll be more cautious adding coloring next time! Using a squeeze bottle or piping bag, drizzle white chocolate ganache around the top rim of the cake, letting it run over the edge to form drips down the side of the cake. Drizzle the ganache over the cake pop and cover the top of the cake, and then set your waffle cone upside down on top of the cake pop. Refrigerate until ready to serve!