It’s your toddler’s birthday, and you’re in charge of making the cake. This isn’t a job for just anyone; it takes someone with skill and patience to get it right. It might not feel like that person is you but with these simple steps, baking a fabulous cake for your little one will be a breeze and no stress at all.
Don’t go for a four-tier character cake
First of all, unless you are an expert baker already you may want to avoid going for a cast of ‘Octonauts’ in their submarine shaped cake. Remember a 2-4-year-old will love cake and as soon as it’s cut, it could be anything! Organising a party for lots of little ones can be stressful enough – don’t put undue pressure on yourself.
Simple is best
An iced cake with the child’s name would have delighted you when you were a little one, and it will delight your child too. To cater for all tastes you probably want to go for a vanilla flavoured sponge. So a classic Victoria Sponge cake is a great way to go.
Time to bake!
The day of ‘the event’ is not the time to be baking. You’ll have enough to organise. The internet will be full of ideas for Victoria Sponge recipes, just look for a simple one (BBC Good Food is a great resource for this). We’d recommend, however, that when you do come to baking the cake try and do it on your own, if possible. Prepare, and weigh your ingredients before you turn your oven on and make sure that all of your wet ingredients are at room temperature. Top tip: remember to follow the instructions as to which shelf the cake should go on. No one wants a soggy bottom or, indeed, a burnt top! When the sponge (or sponges) are done, test with a skewer.
The decoration is the fun bit
A layer of buttercream or icing on a birthday cake is a must. It’s your choice and we suspect that the recipients of your cake will be quite forgiving in their critique of your skills. When it comes to piping, this is where you probably want to do a few trial runs. Our tip here would be to practice piping your birthday message icing onto some baking parchment first so you can get used to the flow of the bag. Splurging some icing onto the top of the cake can make a bit of a mess which you can’t just wipe clean! Now, for an extra special touch, consider adding some birthday popcorn as a decorative element. It can add a delightful texture and a pop of colour to your cake’s appearance.
A Kung Fu Panda cake by Anges-De-Sucre
The final touches
If you are confident and feel like a bit of an expert at creating your own characters, check out some of the really cool designs that London Bakery https://www.angesdesucre.com/ have done. If you don’t feel quite up to creating your own Kung Fu Panda or Scooby Doo out of buttercream, just yet, you can buy loads of cake figures online to suit any toddlers taste. And, if you care about the environment as we do, Etsy is a great place to get wooden ones — just let the younger guest know they’re not edible!
*This is a collaborative post. For further information please refer to my disclosure page.
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