Throwback Thursday

Birthday Cakes

So earlier tonight I had the bright idea of making pink ice cubes for a game next week. I need quite a few so have started in advance (very unlike me – I don’t normally do play that requires so much preparation, but A is doing some amazing things at pre-school and so I have vowed to try harder at home). I thought it would be quite simple: add water and food colouring to an ice cube tray and freeze. Surely? Apparently not. Half an hour later and I am not entirely sure what I was thinking. I have so far succeeded in turning half the kitchen pink, and all of the food colouring has sunk to the bottom of the water in the ice cube tray (should I have mixed it up first? I don’t know. Maybe?). As a chemist I probably should have known that this would happen, but then I am not a very good chemist. I will experiment with another batch next week, providing D doesn’t ban me from using the freezer in the meantime.

I then also decided to make some coloured rice for a game tomorrow. Coloured rice is one of A and E’s favourite sensory materials; it keeps them engaged for hours on end and we play with it regularly. It is usually very simple to make: stir a few drops of food colouring into some uncooked rice and then leave to dry overnight. But, for some reason, tonight I added far too much food colouring to the rice, and have no spare rice to add to soak up the excess. I also decided to forego the use of a spoon and now can’t get the yellow food colouring out of my fingers; this is not the end of the world I suppose, and you never know, the rice may dry overnight. Well it won’t, but nevermind.

Anyway, what I really should be doing tonight is finding a cake design to make for E’s birthday on Saturday (argh, my littlest baby is nearly 2)! For each birthday I bake a cake. It is something my mum always did for me, and something that I love and want to continue for my children. For A I have made a butterfly, Peppa Pig (my personal favourite to date), and a fairy toadstool (almost a disaster, but in the end I managed to pull it off by stuffing excess cake into gaps. Bake-off standard it was not, but it was edible and it looked cute).  E has so far only had one birthday of course, but actually ended up with two cakes (one on his actual birthday, because how can you not?, and then a cheat cake that I constructed using ready-made cakes for his party the following weekend).

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A single Victoria sponge, cut into four pieces and then reassembled into a butterfly shape, iced with butter-cream, and then embellished with a flump and further sweeties. This was an idea that I saw on Pinterest and amended slightly, but I can’t find the original post anywhere. I will endeavour to find it.
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Two Victoria sponges, cut to shape using templates, and then iced with butter-cream.
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One large sponge and a number of cupcakes, all iced with butter-cream. Ok, I am not very good at getting green icing right, but you can see what I am trying to get at…
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Swiss rolls, mini Swiss rolls, chocolate fingers, party rings and a Tunnocks tea cake, all cut to size and assembled.
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Four plain sponges stacked on top of each other (lower three cut to smaller size), off-cuts stacked even further, LOTS of butter-cream and sweeties added! I had wanted to add green icing to the base to make grass, but ran out of time, and so just simply filled it with sweeties!

As E loves trains so much there is no doubt that this next one has to be a train-related cake. But having thought about it a bit more, I don’t think I can pull off an actual train. Attempting to draw a face in icing will probably just look weird and I don’t want to risk it. Therefore, I think I will have to do a cake in the shape of a number 2 (I have found an excellent website that tells you how to construct this using a couple of round cakes), and add a train and some icing. Easy? No, I am not a natural. But hopefully easier than a four-tier toadstool. Pictures will follow in due course, if I manage to pull anything off!

2 thoughts on “Birthday Cakes

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