They’d be right at home at an Alice in Wonderland tea party and Australia is in the midst of a baking trend fresh off the back of a worldwide fascination — the ombre cake.

French for “layers”, these gloriously handsome, towering pillars of deliciousness have enamoured the baking fraternity around the globe.

Social media sites such as Pinterest and baking blogs are chock-full of images and conversations centred around the ombre’s magnificence.

Its name allegedly hails from the textile industry, where fabrics and weaves traditionally possess “layers” of colour, from darkest at the bottom to lightest at the top.

An ombre cake is usually made from a basic vanilla sponge or mudcake base and iced with lashings of buttercream or ganache.

Layers of sponge, of which the sky’s the limit (and odd numbers are best) are baked individually and coloured in different gradients of the same hue, or a rainbow of colours depending on the desired theme.

The same rule can apply to the icing which can be plain, graded or a kaleidoscope of colour.

Bakers find buttercream easiest to dye, with Swiss or Italian meringue buttercreams or white chocolate ganache also good options.

Other alternatives include spreading curd between each layer or soaking the sponge in sugar syrup.

Note to bakers. Assemble the cake when the sponge is completely cooled.

© The West Australian

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