If you truly want a dramatic dessert that will wow eaters of all ages, this is it. A six-layer cake in all the colors of the rainbow, this one is dramatic to cut into and always seems to elicit an “oooooooh” response. It is impossible to be unhappy while eating this cake. Special thanks go to Karen of the blog, off the (meat)hook, whose pictures of a similar cake inspired me to create this recipe.
Preheat the oven as specified in your cake recipe. Line six round cake pans (8- or 9-inch) with circles of parchment paper. If you don’t have six pans (it’s OK, neither do I), line as many as you have; you can bake this in a few batches.
Prepare the cake batter as specified in your recipe, but at the point when you would pour the batter into the pans, instead divide it between six separate bowls. Add food coloring to each of the bowls of batter: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and violet. Be very liberal with the food coloring, as the colors will fade slightly during baking.
Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake. Since these cakes are very thin, keep an eye on the baking time—it will be significantly less than for the normal layers.
Once baked, remove the cakes from the pans and set them on wire racks to cool.
Using a large knife (preferably serrated), slice the tops of the cakes to make them level. Place the violet layer on a serving plate and top with a dollop of frosting. Do not spread it to the edges, as the weight of the succeeding lay- ers will flatten the frosting. Repeat with the remaining layers until they are stacked from bottom to top: violet, blue, green, yellow, orange, and red on top.
To stabilize the cake, place 2 to 3 long skewers down through it (just don’t for- get to remove them from the slices when served!). Chill the cake for at least 20 minutes; it will help it firm up and be easier to frost. Using an offset spatula, apply a thin crumb coat of frosting to all of the cake surfaces. Return the cake to the refrigerator for about 30 minutes so that the crumb coat becomes firm.
Remove from the refrigerator and apply the rest of the frosting. Keep the cake chilled until 30 minutes before serving.