Wednesday, December 8, 2010

My Son's Birthday Cake

Recently we've celebrated our little son's 2nd birthday at Chuck E Cheese and I made this two layered cake for the celebration. He's very fond of Barney and from the beginning I've been planning for a Barney cake. I worked out on various options to create figurines of Barney, BJ and Baby Bop and finally sticked to marshmallow fondant (MMF). But never wanted to cover the entire cake with fondant, and planned to use whipped cream as a frosting. And for the cake, I used chocolate cake for one layer and sour cream cake for another. 

But by the time the cake is cut, the fondant circles which I used to decorate the sides of the cake started to slide down slowly. The combination of whipped cream frosting and marshmallow fondant didn't work as I expected (a lesson learnt). Except that, the cake was a hit on the big day.

Barney and Friends figurines with Marshmallow Fondant:

16 oz packate of Mini Marshmallows
2 lbs Confectioner's Sugar 
Vegetable Shortening as required
Purple (Red + Blue), Yellow and Green colors (of course edible)
  • First step is to melt marshmallows in a microwave. Grease a microwave safe bowl well with generous amount of vegetable shortening, place the marshmallows in the bowl and microwave for 30 seconds. Take the bowl out and stir once and microwave for another 30 seconds more, continue doing this until all the marshmallows are melted. You should even grease the spoon you are using to stir the marshmallows.
  • Sprinkle 3/4 of the powdered sugar into the melted marshmallows and mix with spoon.
  • Now grease your hands then heavily grease the counter you will be using to knead the fondant.  Transfer the fondant mixture to the greased counter and start kneading it.  
  • At this stage it would be real sticky.  Keep kneading by adding confectioner's sugar until you feel it won't accept any more sugar into it.
  • As I've used this fondant to make figurines and not to cover the cake, I wanted this to be much stiffer than normal fondant.  Because when I made figurines with regular fondant recipe, the figures fell flat.
  • For that, when you think it won't accept any more sugar, microwave the dough for about 10 to 15 secs.  It will melt the dough and more sugar can be added to it.  Apply shortening in between to you palms and knead into a smooth dough.
  • Double wrap the entire fondant in cling wrap, and let rest overnight.
  • The next day, divide the dough into portions you like for each color.  Take an individual portion, melt in microwave for 10 seconds and knead the color into it.  Dark colors darken when the fondant sits for a night.   I knew this by experience.  I kneaded red and blue colors to get exact purple color of barney, but by the next day the fondant turned to much darker shade.
  • If you have any excess fondant, double wrap it, put in a ziploc and refrigerate.  Stays good for almost a month.

One advantage with this marshmallow fondant is that this can be made ahead almost a month earlier. I made the figures four days before the party and this way there is enough time for them to dry.  I shaped all the parts of the figures separately and glued them with betty crocker decorating gel.  I mixed all the colors except black, as I didn't have it handy.  I  have these ready to stick eyes which are generally used on dolls and I used them instead of running to the store to buy black food coloring.

Chocolate Cake:

This recipe is from my friend Sridevi who always bakes yummy cakes. 

2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups sugar
2 sticks butter
8 eggs
2/3 cup chocolate syrup - Hershey or anything (if you don't have chocolate syrup you can use same amt of milk with cocoa powder of 12 table spoons)
2/3 cup cocoa powder 
4 tsp baking powder
  • Sift all purpose flour and baking powder together.
  • Beat butter and sugar till fluffy.
  • Add an egg at a time and keep mixing till frothy and well mixed.
  • Add chocolate syrup and cocoa and mix for another 2 minutes.
  • Then fold in the dry ingredients.
  • Grease and dust a  13x9 inch baking pan 
  • Pour the batter and bake at 350 deg F for around 45 to 50 mins or until tooth pic inserted comes out clean.

Sour Cream Cake: 

I found this recipe on Cake Central which calls for almond extract.  But I've added vanilla extract instead of almond in my cake. 

1 box white cake mix (Betty crocker or pillsbury)
1 cups all-purpose flour
1 cups granulated sugar
3/4 tsp salt
4 egg whites
1 1/3 cups water
2 Tbls. vegetable oil
1 cup sour cream
2 tsp vanilla extract
  • This recipes makes a 13x9 " cake.
  • Grease the cake pan and preheat oven to 325 deg F.
  • Place all dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl and stir together with a wire whisk.  Add the remaining wet ingredients and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes.
  • Pour into greased pan a little over half full. Tap the pan on the counter to level and to remove any air bubbles.
  • Bake in the oven for about 45 to 50 minutes or till a tooth pic inserted comes out clean.

Stabilized Whipped Cream Frosting:

6 cups Heavy whipping cream
4 tsps Unflavored Gelatin
1 cup of water
1 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
3 tsps vanilla extract
  • Chill the mixing bowl and the whisk atleast for half an hour before you start whipping.  The cake should be chilled too. 
  • Take a cup of water and sprinkle the gelatin on the top.  Let it rest and dissolve for 5 minutes.  Put it in the microwave to warm just or 10 secs.  Stir and microwave again or 10 more secs.  Let the gelatin cool down at room temperature or 10 minutes.
  • Take the heavy whipping cream, sugar and vanilla in the mixing bowl and start whisking at low speed for 5 minutes or until soft peak forms.   Pour in the cooled gelatin and whisk until firm peaks are formed.  
  • Use immediately to frost the cake as desired but refrigerate until used.


  1. Awesome cake vasavi. I'm sure Nikhith would have loved this cake :)

  2. Cake looks extremely fabulous, soo prefect..My belated birthday wishes to ur prince..

  3. Happy Birthday to Nikith....lovely cake vasavi...


  4. wow..Your son must have been really happy to see Barney and friends......Belated Birthday wishes to him....Cake looks absolutely scrumptious...

  5. looks awesome! belated birthday wishes to ur son, i am sure he must have been thrilled to see this cake - u r so creative!

  6. awesome cake and finish Vasavi...

  7. Belated birthday wishes to nikhith.Yummy and delicious cake.Love the barney figures.

  8. Cake looks so nice. The fondant figures are so beautiful.

  9. Happy Birthday to Nikhith....awesome cake..

  10. Belated birthday wishes Nikhith...God bless...
    Cake looks amazing with cute fondant figures...loved it...

  11. First time here..Cake looks scrumptious and I loved viewing the pictures of the barney characters

  12. Birthday wishes to your son...cake looks awesome and delicious!!

  13. very creative deco on the cake.....


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