Sissy's Checkerboard Cake
A recipe from Create Cooking Challenge 2017 winner Buki Elegbede.
Your favorite layer cake recipe
Your favorite food coloring
Butter cream frosting
7 large egg whites
1½ cups granulated sugar
¼ teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
5 sticks of unsalted butter (room temp)
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Butter four, 8-inch round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment paper, and butter the parchment. Dust with flour and knock out the excess flour.
2. Divide batter evenly between 2 large bowls
3. Set one bowl aside and, in the other bowl mix in food coloring to your desired shade (you can also add another color to the first bowl for a multicolored effect).
4. Divide each bowl into two of the four prepared pans and smooth tops. Bake, rotating pans halfway through baking time, until a toothpick inserted in center of each cake comes out clean, 25 to 35 minutes Transfer cakes to a wire rack and let cool completely.
5. Cut a 6-inch circle from each cake
6. Cut a 4-inch circle from the 6-inch circles
7. Cut a 2-inch circle from the 4-inch circles
8. Place each round, alternating colors, to form a complete round.
9. Place one cooled cake layer on a cake turntable. Using a serrated knife, trim top of cake to create a flat surface, and evenly spread buttercream over top. Add next layer, making sure the outermost ring is the alternating color from the first layer.
10. Frost as before.
11. Add third layer and repeat as before.
12. Add the final layer (the 4 layers should be alternating colors)
13. Place turntable on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Frost sides and top with remaining buttercream. Decorate as you see fit.
14. Chill the cake for about 5 minutes to set before serving.
Butter cream frosting
1. Combine egg whites and sugar and salt in a heat proof bowl and set over a pan with simmer water (make sure simmering water does not come in direct contact with bowl).
2. Cook egg whites and sugar until sugar is completely dissolved and egg white mixture reads 180 degrees on an instant read thermometer
3. Place mixture in a bowl of a stand mixture fitted with a whisk attachment and whip on high for 10 minutes. Or, until the mixture cools (feeling the sides of the bowl will indicate when the mixture has cooled thoroughly).
4. Once the mixture has cooled, reduce the speed to low and add vanilla.
5. Add butter (one tablespoon at a time) to mixture. The mixture will deflate to a brief period, but will resume its intended fluffy texture.