We’ve been challenged to come up with a happy and colourful recipe to celebrate the Blu-ray & DVD release of the family musical Annie, available to buy from April 27th which features a talented and award winning cast.
Jamie Foxx plays New York City billionaire Will Stacks, who takes in a foster kid to boost his image while campaigning for mayor. Academy Award® nominee Quvenzhané Wallis plays Annie, a young, happy foster kid originally left by her parents with the promise they’d be back for her some-day. The “hard knock life” she’s experienced living with mean foster mom Miss Hannigan, played by Cameron Diaz (Shrek), has also made her into a savvy, street-smart New York City kid. Her life changes dramatically after meeting Will Stacks, who takes her in and believes he’s her guardian angel, but Annie’s sun-will-come-out-tomorrow outlook on life just might mean it’s the other way around. Featuring a mix of new and timeless songs, this updated version brings a hip new vibe to a heart-warming family film that both old and new fans can enjoy. ANNIE also stars Rose Byrne (This Is Where I Leave You) as Stack’s assistant Grace, and Bobby Cannavale (Chef) as Stack’s campaign manager, Guy.
So, onto the challenge. Only a couple of months ago my kids took part in a show where they had to sing songs from the musical, you guessed it, Annie! It’s a Hard Knock Life was on a constant loop in our house, lines were learnt and moves were mastered, some moves may have even been busted. This challenge was supposed to include the kids so I asked them to come up with the recipe idea. They went waaaaaaaayyyyyyyy over the top wanting to craft a cake consisting of a New York apartment building complete with windows that we could look in only to find a room with lots of beds and orphans! They clearly rate my skills higher than I do myself. I brought them down to earth slightly and they then started singing ‘Tomorrow’ – cue the talk of sunshines and happy thoughts and eventually they settled on the concept of a colourful rainbow cake. Can you really get happier than a Rainbow? In the movie Annie has a disastrous attempt at baking and I did hope that our efforts would work out better than hers.
Ladies & gentlemen, boys & girls, may I introduce our HAPPY RAINBOW CAKE!
It took a bit of preparation but it was fun. The night before our baking extravaganza we spent hours cutting tiny flowers out of various colours of icing. I cannot stress this fact enough that it is crucial to buy REALLY, REALLY, REALLY, REALLY good quality colourings (you can find out here the perils of using cheap colourings in a recipe that calls for some colour) I bought 6 professional grade colourings and mixed a golf ball amount of royal icing with 2 drops of the desired colour to get the colours that you see in the image above. Leave them overnight and they’ll harden ready to create a vision of loveliness.
Set the oven to 190 and combine all the ingredients in a mixer until lightly coloured and fluffy.
250g Caster Sugar
4 medium size eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder
VERY IMPORTANT!!! The above recipe is for one normal size cake baked in two cake tins, if you want to create the same size as the one we have baked then all you have to do is double this recipe and then divide the mixture between 7 different bowls. Add 2 drops of colouring to each bowl and add more drop by drop to get the desired colour. Cook the mixture in the middle of the oven for approx. 20 mins or until it is firm to the touch.
225g or 1 Cup of Butter
350g or 3 Cups of Icing Sugar
2 Teaspoons of Vanilla Essense
2 Tablespoons of Milk
Combine all of the ingredients in a mixer until smooth. To achieve the multi-coloured effect of the sponge in the pictures we simply cut a circle out of the middle of each cake and swapped it with another colour, we then sandwiched each layer to the next using a thin layer of frosting and when the tower was complete we covered the whole of the outside of the cake with the remaining frosting. Then the kids went to town with the sprinkles and the icing flowers which they made the night before. It definitely did take a while to complete this but it’s definitely a VERY colourful and HAPPY cake. Would you agree?
Think big and reach for the stars,
Disclaimer: The words and recipe are my own, but this is a sponsored post to promote the DVD release of Annie.