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Carnival Rum Cake

Gearing up for the Notting Hill Carnival? You'll need some delicious treats to make it through the weekend and this rum cake is right on theme for your celebration!

Prep Time: 45 minutes

Cook Time: 35-40 minutes

Total Time: 14 hours

Special Equipment: 6" cake tins, stand or hand mixer and paint/pastry brush



240g plain flour

24g almond flour

298g caster sugar

96g instant vanilla pudding mix

2 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

113g unsalted butter, softened

99g vegetable oil

113g whole milk, room temp

4 ea large eggs

113g gold rum, plain

2 tsp vanilla bean paste


113g unsalted butter

57g water

198g caster sugar

1/4 tsp salt

113g gold rum, plain

1/2 tsp vanilla extract


400g white candy melts

food colouring of your choice - we love ColourMill



  1. Preheat your oven to 165C.

  2. Grease and line three 6" baking tins. Set aside.

  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, combine the plain flour, almond flour, sugar, pudding mix, salt, butter and vegetable oil. Mix on low speed until everything is combined and resembles wet sand.

  4. Turn off the mixer and add the milk, mix on low to combine.

  5. Add the eggs one by one, make sure each egg is incorporated before adding another. Use a silicone spatula to scrape down the bowl.

  6. Add the vanilla and the rum, mix on low until just incorporated.

  7. Divide your batter evenly between the prepared cake tins and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the centre comes out clean.

  8. When the sponges are done, remove them from the oven and set them aside to cool in their tins. Meanwhile, make your syrup.


  1. In a medium saucepan combine all of the ingredients, except the vanilla.

  2. Place the saucepan on medium-high heat and bring the mixture to a rapid boil. Then reduce to a simmer and allow the syrup to cook without stirring for 5-8 minutes, until thickened.

  3. Remove from the heat and add in the vanilla.

  4. Use a skewer to poke small holes all over the top of your sponges and pour a portion of the syrup over each sponge. Wait for the syrup to soak in and repeat the process until all of the syrup is gone.

  5. Allow the sponges to cool completely, then wrap them in cling film and allow the cakes to sit overnight at room temperature to soak in the syrup.


  1. Place your white candy melts in a medium saucepan and begin to melt them on a low heat. DO NOT leave these alone, they burn quickly so you need to watch them.

  2. Once your candy melts are 95% melted, take them off of the heat and divide them into bowls, one for each colour of brushstroke you want.

  3. Lay out a piece of parchment paper on a clean work surface, this will be what you use to shape the brushstrokes.

  4. Take one colour of candy melts and dollop a small dot onto the parchment paper. Then, using your paint brush, press into the dollop of candy melt and pull away to create a streak. Repeat this process until all of the candy melts are finished, make sure you do varying size of dollops, so that you get small, medium and large brushstrokes to use on your cake.

  5. Allow the candy melts 10 minutes to cool and harden before peeling them off of the parchment paper.


  1. Remove the sponges from their tins. If you have trouble with this, try dipping the bases into a bowl of hot water to loosen up the syup.

  2. Stack the sponges with a layer of buttercream between each. Cover the outside of the stacked cake with a good layer of buttercream so you cannot see the sponges inside. For best results, allow this to sit in the fridge for 30 minutes to 1 hour to firm up the buttercream.

  3. Once your cake is ready, begin placing your brush strokes in a creative pattern! Start from the top of the cake and work your way down. Use any extra buttercream to help the brushstrokes stick to the cake.

  4. Serve at room temperature with coffee or tea. Enjoy!


  1. When icing your cake, do a very thin first coat around the outside, then put it in the fridge for 30 minutes. This is called a crumb coat and it will help the edges of your cake to look clean and straight.

  2. Want more flavour? Add in some nuts or dried fruit to the cake, you can even throw in some spices for a festive touch.

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