1. Cool cake layers in pans on wire rack for 5 minutes.

2. Cover another rack with a towel; place towel side down on top of layer and invert as a unit. Remove pan.

3. Place original rack on bottom of layer; turn over both racks (as a unit) so layer is right side up.

4. Repeat with other layer. Allow layers to cool completely.

5. Before frosting cake, brush loose crumbs from sides and edges of cooled layers. Support cake firmly with one hand and brush crumbs with the other.

6. Place one layer, rounded side down, on cake plate, spread about 1/2 cup of frosting to within 1/4 inch of edge.

7. Place second layer, rounded side up, on frosted layer. Coat side with very thin layer of frosting to seal in crumbs.

8. Swirl more frosting on side, forming a 1/4-inch ridge above top of cake.

9. Spread remaining frosting over top of cake, just meeting the built-up ridge around side. Make attractive swirls or leave the top smooth for decorations.


• If your cake is bumpy or has a hump in the middle, slice off the bumps to make the layer level. (You can eat this.) If the cake falls apart or part of it sticks to the pan, try "gluing" it together with the frosting.

• Let the cake cool completely before you start. Otherwise, the frosting will melt on it and run all over.

• For initials or lettering, use chocolate chips or red cinnamon candies.

• Decorate with candles, tiny toys, crushed candy, coconut or chopped nuts.

• Scatter candy sprinkles in spirals, strips or around the edge for a border.

Dip the spatula in hot water to give the frosting a smooth look.

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