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Bake up a red, white and blue cake for this Fourth of July

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The Fourth of July is just around the corner and the time to begin preparing your menu is now, if you have not already done so. This quick and easy cake will surprise and delight your guests with its patriotic coloring baked throughout. If you wish to create a healthier version of this cake, decorate it with fresh fruit, such as blueberries, strawberries, raspberries and cherries, instead of sugar stars.

Supplies

  • 9X13 cake pan
  • non-stick spray
  • 1 package white cake mix
  • the ingredients specified by the cake mix to complete the cake (typically 3 eggs, 1 cup water and 1/3 cup oil, although this will vary depending on the manufacturer of your mix)
  • 15 drops blue coloring
  • 15 drops red coloring
  • 1 can cream cheese frosting
  • star shaped stencil
  • blue tinted sugar
  • red tinted sugar

Directions
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray cake pan with non-stick spray. Following the directions on your cake mix, prepare the cake batter and divide it into 3 equal portions. Tint one portion with blue coloring and pour it into the cake pan, carefully smoothing into an even layer. Gently spoon white cake batter on top of the blue. Spread it carefully to cover the blue layer. Next, tint the remaining portion of batter with red coloring and top the white layer, once again spreading carefully to cover the layer beneath. Bake cake as directed by the cake mix package (approximately 25-30 minutes). Remove cake from the oven and cool completely. Frost the cake and then decorate it with with stars by using the star shaped stencil and the colored sugars.

Cook's Notes: For an even more colorful variation of this cake, separate the batter into 9 portions. Tint 4 of them in increasing shades of pink and red and 4 in increasing shades of blue, leaving one white. Bake them in thin layers, one or two at a time, and create a layered cake such as the one accompanying this article. It is a much more time intensive process, but the end results are truly stunning.

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