Saturday, March 14, 2009

Happy Pi Day (and a Cake)!

Happy Pi Day!

In honor of the occasion, I decided to bake a cake. (I'm not a pie baker so it's gonna be a cake.) It has to be π-themed, of course. So I decided to make a cake that represents a method of calculating π.

Imagine a square with a circle inside it:

Let's take the ratio of the area of the circle and the square. If the radius of the circle is R, then the area of the circle is πR2. The length of the side of the square is 2R, so the area of the square is (2R)2 = 4 R2. So the ratio is
πR2/(4 R2) = πR2/(4 R2) = π/4.

I chose my old standard, the cocoa devil's food cake from The Joy of Cooking; here are the ingredients:

And here are the pans in which I will bake the layers:

You can see they are nearly the same size:

I'll spare you the details of making the cake except to mention that since I'm using buttermilk powder I added the powder in with the dry ingredients, and put plain water in the wet ingredients:

Here are the finished layers:
Unfortunately the round layer is too large
so I have to trim it a bit:
Here I start frosting the square layer
and here it is after frosting
Then I added the round layer
and sealed in the crumbs where I trimmed it, with a thin layer of frosting,
before frosting over with a thicker coat
This is what it looks like with the frosting, before I decorate it further:
At the recommendation of avid reader and real-life friend Rico, I decorated the cake with sprinkles;* here's an overhead view
and a view from a more photogenic angle:
I made some frosting sandwiches with the leftover frosting and circumference
which was enjoyed by my two boys.

* You'll see why in a later post!

1 comment:

rico said...

Yet another brilliant entry on your blog, tc-aam. That I, Rico, could contribute in some oh-so-small way is an honor. I will, however, point out that, with regard to the cake size difference, another solution existed, translated to English as "The Frosting Solution".



PS Is there a natural logarithm day?