Jelly AND cake? Winner! The Australian Women’s Weekly’s famous swimming pool cake from their ‘Children’s Birthday Cake Book‘ was an ’80s favourite and still impresses to this day.
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Chocolate butter cream
1.Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. Grease deep 20cm (8-inch) round cake pan; line base and side with baking paper, extending paper 5cm above sides.
2.Make cake according to directions on packet. Spread mixture into pan; bake about 50 minutes. Stand cake in pan 5 minutes before turning, top-side up, onto wire rack to cool.
3.Meanwhile, make jelly according to directions on packet; pour into a shallow container. Refrigerate until set.
4.To make butter cream, beat butter until white as possible, gradually beat in half the sifted icing sugar then milk, then remaining icing sugar. Beat until smooth. Stir sifted cocoa into butter cream.
5.Level cake top; secure cake, cut-side down, on 30cm (12-inch) round cake board with a little butter cream.
6.Cut a recess into the centre of the cake, about 2cm in from the edge, and about 2.5cm deep. Remove and discard centre of cake; trim recess to neaten.
7.Spread chocolate butter cream all over edge and side of cake (but not into the hollowed-out area).
8.Position chocolate finger biscuits around side of cake, leaving an opening of about 5cm for ladder.
9.Use Musk Sticks and thin strips of licorice strap to make ladder; secure with butter cream, and toothpicks, if necessary. Position ladder on cake.
10.Paint stripes of food colouring onto Kool Mints to make beach balls; stand until set.
11.Push 2 small dolls through the jelly rings to make children in rubber floats; spread a little butter cream on heads of dolls, dip in green sprinkles to make bathing caps.
12.Secure 5cm pieces of jelly snakes together to make rubber mattress with a little butter cream, or toothpicks, if necessary. Position remaining baby doll on mattress.
13.Mash set jelly with a fork, spoon into the centre of the cake to represent water; position children, beach balls and umbrella in water.
Summertime… and the livin’ is easy. Use blue jelly crystals if you think the green makes this pool look like it needs a good clean! Remove any toothpicks before cutting and serving the cake.