You know what's been more difficult for me to create/imagine more than anything else? A simple patriotic cake design for holidays like tomorrow - July 4th. I've been trying to come up with a design that would feed my fancy, for years. Maybe I just have to make bake the cake, color the buttercream, and give it a go. Regardless, I tend to focus more on foods and fixings that we tend to enjoy on these special days. Of course we have our cookouts, and what's a cookout without the site of a whole watermelon waiting to be cut into. It's the one fruit that you can put on a plate with ribs, burgers, chicken, and it not look odd! There hasn't been a BBQ that I've gone to where I didn't hear someone ask "Who's bringing the watermelon?" It's a summer time staple! RESPECT.
As I perused the market baking aisle in a random market, this cute green box caught my eye. Umm...since when did Jolly Rancher make jello? And watermelon jello, which is like everyone's favorite jolly rancher candy flavor. I had to buy it! I've been holding onto this jello all year waiting for the perfect opportunity to create my cake. The fourth of July! It may not be "patriotic" per se, but doggonit of it's not PATRIOTIC! So let's make a jolly rancher watermelon flavored watermelon cake!
Jolly Rancher Watermelon Cake
Makes 3-8in. cakes or 2-9in cakes
Vanilla Cake Recipe:
1/2 C Egg Whites
2 C Buttermilk (Half & Half, 2 T vinegar)
1 C Vegetable Oil
1 1/3 C Sugar
1 Pack Watermelon Jello (jolly rancher brand)
3 C Flour
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
2 tsp Baking Soda
Gel Dye: Leaf green, Pink
1. Preheat oven to 350. In a large mixing bowl: Combine all dry ingredients. This includes flour, sugar, salt, baking powder, jello, and baking soda. I like to fluff up the dry ingredients with a whisk. This helps to make the flour light and airy without having to sift. In the video, you see me add half the box of jello. I've double this recipe so you're using the whole box. #BakingHacks
2. Next, we add all of the wet ingredients to the dry mix. Many prefer to purchase buttermilk, but honestly I find it more cost effective to just make my own. I do this by mixing about 1 tablespoon of vinegar for every 1 cup of milk or half & half.
3. Mix all of the ingredients together for a couple of minutes just until all of the flour has completely incorporated. Be careful as to not over-mix the batter. Line your cake pans with parchment paper and rub the sides with butter or nonstick cooking spray.
4. Lastly, pour the batter into 2 9 inch or 3 8 inch pans and bake in a 350 degree oven for about 25 minutes or until springy to the touch. If you're not confident in the touching method, go ahead a stick a toothpick in the center - it should come out clean. Allow the cake to cool completely before filling.
5. I used mock meringue buttercream to fill and decorate the cakes. Once they cool, fill and layer your cakes and finish with a crumb coat. Chill for 20-30 minutes. Split remaining buttercream into three portions. Dye a large amount pink, a small amount green, and leave the rest white.
6. Watch the video tutorial to see how to decorate this cake for a fun ombre effect. Decorate your cake with some fresh watermelon, sanding sugar, and gold leaf if you're fancy.