Serve a grand slam treat with this larger-than-life tennis ball cake. What could be better? How about making a dam on top half of cake by squeezing out a band of icing about 3/4 in. high around the edge and adding icing, jam, pudding or other filling in center. What?s not 2-LOVE?
Prepare Icing We suggest that you tint all icings at one time while cake cools. Refrigerate tinted icings in covered containers until ready to use.
Make 3 cups buttercream icing: Tint 2 3/4 cups yellow (thin 3/4 cup with 1 teaspoon light corn syrup)
Tint 1/4 cup gray (mix in a very small amount of black)
Decorate in Order
With a serrated knife, slice a small piece of cake off rounded side of one half so that, when assembled, cake will sit level.
Ice smooth or cover this trimmed area with tip 16 white stars. Place this half with trimmed side down on serving plate. Make a dam on top of this half by squeezing out a band of icing about 3/4 in. high around the edge. With spatula, spread icing, jam, pudding or other filling in center.
Position top half to form ball. Lightly ice with thinned yellow icing.
Mark seam pattern with toothpick.
Use tip 3 and gray icing to pipe seams on ball with 2 side-by-side outlines (flatten and smooth with finger dipped in cornstarch).
Use tip 16 and yellow icing to cover ball with stars.
Baking Instructions Preheat oven to 350°F or temperature per recipe directions. Your cake will unmold easily, without sticking, when you prepare the pan properly. Grease the inside of pan using a pastry brush and solid vegetable shortening (do not use butter, margarine or liquid vegetable oil). Spread the shortening so that all indentations are covered. Sprinkle about 2 Tablespoons flour inside pan and shake so that flour covers all greased surfaces.
Turn pan upside down and tap lightly to remove excess flour. If any shiny spots remain, touch up with more shortening and flour to prevent cake from sticking. (You can use vegetable oil pan spray or vegetable oil pan spray with flour, in place of solid shortening and flour or use Wilton Cake Release, for perfect, crumb-free cakes!).
Make one 2-layer cake mix according to package or recipe directions. Pour the cake batter into pan, and if necessary, spread the batter around with a spatula to fill all areas of the pan evenly. Be careful not to touch sides or bottom of pan.
Bake cake on middle rack of 350°F oven for 30-40 minutes or until cake tests done according to recipe directions.
Remove cake from oven and cool on cake rack for 10 minutes. While the cake is still in the pan, carefully slice off the raised center portion of the cake. This allows the cake to sit more level and helps prevent cracking.
To remove cake from pan, place cooling rack against cake and turn both cake rack and pan over. Lift pan off carefully. Cool cake at least one hour. Brush loose crumbs off cake.
To transfer cake to serving board, hold a cake board against cake and turn both cake and rack over. Lift off rack. Hold another board against bottom of cake and turn cake over. Be sure to hold cake, rack and board close together while turning to prevent cake from cracking.
We recommend hand washing pan in hot, soapy water.