Monday, July 22, 2013

Princess Birthday Cake

My little Bambolina (little doll in Italian) wanted to have a Princess birthday party this year, a Sleeping Beauty Aurora party to be precise.  She loves Sleeping Beauty Aurora, she loves pink, and she loves anything princess.  So I knew I had to make the princess cake that Wilton and Betty Crocker have been making since ... well way before I was born.  You know the one.  The one with the little doll sticking out of the top and the cake is the girl's dress.  Yep, that was the one I needed to make.  There are all sorts of You Tubes about this type of cake out there for any baker to watch.  And here is my story about my first princess cake for my daughter's 3rd birthday.

First thing I did was try to figure out what bowl I was going to bake my cake in.  I looked at all my bowls and didn't see the tell tale markings on the bottom that would make me think I could bake safely in any of my bowls.  So I called my dear friend Lene; I knew she would have a baking bowl.  And she did.  She also had a Wilton baking book to help inspire my dress decorating side.  This book as she said was "ancient."  But I have to tell you the cakes in that book are beautiful to look at; and I am not sure if the home baker today attempts cakes like this anymore .... nope I am sure .... most home bakers today do not attempt cakes like this.  The princess cakes in the book were elaborate, and I knew I didn't have that level of expertise.  But the book did give me ideas for some pretty lines of decorations that I could put on Sleeping Beauty's dress.

The next step was making the cakes.  I chose to make a yellow cake in Lene's bowl, which would become the part of the dress closest to the doll's waist.  And two chocolate 9 inch round cakes.  I figured this would give me four layers of cake (the bowl cake gets split into two layers because it the bowl is so deep) and a good sized dress.

Once the cakes were done and cooled, it was time to start stacking the layers.  But first, I needed to create the hole which the princess would stick out of.  So I took a round cookie cutter and cut a hole in both chocolate round cakes.  Then I cut the bowl cake on the horizontal first.












 Lastly I cut the same round cookie hole in both parts of the bowl cake.  Time to start stacking.  I made a butter cream frosting to use between each layer.















Then I put a crumb coat over the whole cake.  This is just a thin layer of frosting used to hold the crumbs down, so that when you put on your final layer of frosting there are no crumbs to be seen.  It makes your cake look more professional.  After putting this crumb coat on, I put the cake in the refrigerator for an hour or so to let the frosting set hard.

This is where I ran into trouble. It was  time to finish the cake.  I took the cake out of the refrigerator, put plastic wrap around the Sleeping Beauty doll I bought my daughter.



I place the doll into the hole I made and........... The cake / dress came up to the doll's mid thigh.  I forgot to measure how much dress I needed.  I just assumed that  four tiers (two 9 inch rounds and 1 bowl cut in half) would be enough.  I clearly needed another 9 inch round.  Since there was nothing I could do to make the cake taller, I used one of my daughter's less expensive knock off Barbie dolls because it was easy to take the doll apart at the waist. Now with only half a doll (from the waist up) I was able to place her in the hole I made and use a couple of  toothpicks to support her floating torso. 

Now it was time to decorate the dress.  I had fun with this part. I made the dress pink with dark pink embellishments and small little pearl candies.
I had to put the doll's hair in an "updo" so it wouldn't get into the cake.
I had to add a lot of dark pink flowers to the back of her dress to help hold her floating torso up.







































The BEST PART .... my son made my daughter close her eyes, so she could be surprised when she saw the cake for the first time.  And was she surprised? YOU BET SHE WAS!  I will always remember her face and that beautiful smile.  The first thing she said was," oh.... thank you Mama!"


Happy 3rd Birthday my Little Princess.  I love you. Mama






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