During the week that my husband was in the hospital, my five year old daughter was distraught. She wasn’t that upset that daddy was hurt and in the ICU, no, she was concerned that we would forget her birthday. Everyday that the Good Guy was in the hospital, a neighbor picked her up from school and kept her until I returned home at 6pm. When she met me at the door, the first thing she asked was, “Did you go shopping for my presents yet?” My answer was no for a few days and as a result, her lower lip would tremble, her eyes would water and I would feel guilt.
I finally made the time to shop, just two days before her birthday. In the meantime, I was panicking about her cake. She wanted a rainbow. I am sure she was thinking she would get an arch shaped cake decorated in colorful stripes. I was also sure that I had no time or inclination to go to that much trouble.
Luckily, I remembered seeing zebra cakes somewhere on a few blogs. The technique was to pour two alternating colors in a round pan, one on top of the other to form vertical rings of colors. Ha! That solved my rainbow dilemma !! It was actually fun to serve a white frosted cake and see the looks of amazement on all of my kids’ faces when we cut into it and revealed the brightly colored interior. My teenagers kept asking “How’d you do that, Mom?!” To which I replied, “Face it, kids, your mom is brilliant.” (With so many teenagers thinking their parents are stupid in my house, I try to counter that as often as possible).
- 1 light colored cake mix (I used butter pecan, but, lemon, white or yellow would work)
- eggs, oil and water according to package directions
- 6-8 different colors liquid food coloring
- Make cake batter according to package directions.
- Divide batter evenly into 6-8 small bowls.
- Stir a different color into each bowl until each is totally mixed.
- Pour the first color into a 10 inch round pan (I used a spring-form).
- Slowly, pour the next color directly in the center of the first color.
- Do not move the stream of batter from the center of the pan.
- Scrape all of the color out of the bowl into the circle.
- Repeat with all of the colors, making sure to pour only into the center of the pan.
- As you pour the colors, you will see the rings begin to appear at the edge of the pan.
- Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
- Cool and frost as desired.