Wednesday, May 15, 2013

A cake for a Birthday Princess

Every little girl is a princess, don't you think? And more so on her birthday. 
My son calls her Tai (meaning elder sister) and she turned 7, Sujata's little Princess is one year older.

A few weeks ago, our little Princess and I looked at several cake pictures on Pinterest and made 'expert comments' and she and I both liked one cake, instantly. We decided that I was going to make it for her birthday. 

I promised her, but I was a bit unsure... I mean, it is one thing to want to make a cake and another to nail it. you don't want a disappointed 7 year old on her special day.
Daunting as it was, I stuck to my plan and set out to make a Princess Doll Cake for our little Princess.

Barbie Doll Cake

The Prep:

I opted for a regular Barbie Doll from the store (The Dancing Shoes Barbie), instead of a doll insert. that way the birthday girl gets a new doll to add to her collection.

I used box mix for the cake, while I do have a very dependable Vanilla cake recipe, I was not willing to risk anything and 'better safe than sorry', right?

The frosting was Whipped cream and Cream cheese ( recipe below)

I made some Gum Paste Flowers and bought the decorating 'pearls'  to accent the cake.

For the Doll's skirt, I used round cake pans and a Pyrex bowl ( all 8 inch diameter) and a mini angel cake bundt pan.

Making the Princess Doll Cake:
Since I used the doll, and she is tall, the cake had to accordingly to be tall too, at least 8.5 inches.
Make the cake as per the instructions. I made these 3 ( 2 round cakes and one round, baked in a Pyrex 2 quart bowl)  as you can see in the picture below and a small angel cake bundt (not in picture).

Prep for the Doll's skirt

I made the cakes one day in advance. Once the cakes are cooled, level them, using a cake leveler or a serrated knife and take off the dome.
Alternately, you can use a strip of cloth ( an old thick kitchen towel) soaked in water and wrapped around on the outside of the cake pan while baking or buy Bake Even strips at any craft store, this will help bake the cakes with an even flat-top.

Prep the Doll, wrap the doll  waist down in cling wrap.This will keep her clean.

To make the Frosting:

To me,this was my real challenge. I like butter cream frosting for it's sturdiness and how easy it makes decorating. What I dislike, is how sweet it is.  even for a sweet lover that I am, I  clench my teeth at how-very-sweet it is.

I like whipped cream frosting because it is mildly sweet, feels light ( if you are eating cake, you are not counting calories!).
My concern is, whipped cream is not sturdy, it just does not hold shape as well and makes decorating a tad difficult and not so well defined.
My job therefore was to find a way to make the frosting sturdy.
Search revealed that gelatin is an ideal stabilizer, however, many of the party were vegetarians and so using this option was ruled out.
The other option was using pudding powder, but I was still on the look out and my search was well rewarded!
Prep the doll, level the cake and  make the whipped cream frosting

Source: Here 
1 (8 oz.) packet Cream Cheese (regular)
1/2 cup Confectioners sugar  I used a little more than the recommended 1/2 cup, I added about 2-3 tbsp extra)
1 tsp. vanilla Flavor ( Almond will work well too)
2 cups Heavy Whipping Cream
Food coloring ( I used McCormick Neon colors, a few drops of the blue)

Chill the bowl and the beaters in the freezer for about 10-15 mins before you want to make the frosting.
Once ready, pull out the cream cheese from the fridge and add it to the chilled bowl and add sugar. Cream the two until smooth.
Add the vanilla extract and mix it. With the beaters still going, slowly add the whipping cream and then the food color and beat on medium speed  till soft peaks form.
I doubled the recipe as my cake had to be about 8.5 inches tall

Cake decoration Work-in-Progress. Piping rosettes and  Gum paste flowers to accent the doll's skirt

To start working on the cake:

Using the leveler or a serrated knife, cut the dome cake in 2; horizontally.

Use a round cookie / biscuit cutter and punch out holes in the middle of the dome shaped cake, the bundt and one round cake. 

Leave one round cake as is for the bottom layer.

To keep the cake moist, I use a very mild sugar water solution. Using a pastry brush, apply the sugar water all over the leveled part, this also helps in locking any crumbs.

Place one 8 inch round cake as the bottom layer and 'paint' all over with the sugar- water solution, add a generous dollop of the frosting and spread it out evenly using an offset spatula.

Brush the second round cake with the sugar water and gently place it over the base cake. Apply a generous dollop of the frosting. 

Follow the same steps to place all layers of the cake.

The next step is to crumb coat the cake.Spread a thin layer of the  frosting all over the cake and place it in the fridge for a few minutes ( about 15 -20 mins)
All Done! 

To Decorate the cake:

Fit a decorating bag with Wilton's Tip # 18 (for slightly bigger rosettes, use tip # 21).

Fill the pastry bag with the frosting and pipe rosettes, beginning at the bottom and go around.

If there are any gaps between the rosettes,  cover them up, later, with stars ( using the same tip) 

Use decorations of your choice, I used  gum paste apple blossom flowers ( the bright green ones) that I made a few days ago and CakeMate-Perfect Pearls. 
These can be found in the Baking Supplies aisle.Use your imagination ! 

Keep the cake in the fridge until ready to cut. 


This is definitely my choice for frosting  on cakes, beats butter-cream frosting hands down!

It is very important to chill the bowl and beaters in the freezer before you set out to making the frosting. 

Alternately, you can take a big bowl, fill it half way ( or a bit less) with ice cubes and place another bowl on top and make the frosting.

You can also use fresh seasonal fruit to layer in the cake with the frosting.

The birthday girl and all the guests were very happy with the cake!  I am SO glad I tried it and it was a success!

I am sending this post to Cucina di Barbara (Barbara's Kitchen) and participating in the fabulous giveaway!

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  1. so beautiful sure ur daughter would hv enjoyed it

    1. Thanks, Veena. this cake was made for my friend'd daughter, who just turned 7.

  2. Such a great art of making cake you have used ! Hats off to you.

  3. looks stunning,loved the first click.

  4. The doll cake looks wonderful and the rosettes are looking very cute.

  5. Hello,

    I have been following your blog for a number of months now, but never reached out.

    The cake looks lovely... Congratulations...The first picture that you have posted, I almost thought that the picture is from a fancy recipe book which you followed - it looks that good... hope you bake and decorate many more such beautiful cakes ahead.


    1. Thank you so much, Meenal! I am glad this post made you de-lurk and post this kind comment! Made my day!
      I hope in the future I get opportunities to make cakes.

  6. Very Very Pretty Cake ! Hats off to ur effort! I wish I also learn to do all this!

    1. Thank you, Sharmi. If you like cake decorating, give it a try!

  7. Belated B'day and I am sure your daughter loved the cake.

    What a beautiful bake. Love it, good job dear.

    1. Thank you Latha. The birthday girl is my friend's daughter and yes, she loved the cake!

  8. OMG!!! Kasla cake aahe!!!! Very very pretty and wish I was the 7 year old girl!!!
    Love Ash.

    1. Thank you, Ashwini! I loved making this cake!

  9. My god, Manasi,how amazing is that! That is one BEAUTIFUL cake, you are one talented cake maker, and that is one lucky princess. Kudos!

    1. Thank you Vaishali! The birthday girl loved the cake !

  10. Worth all the praises .. awesome cake !!

  11. awesome wishes to b'day girl:)

  12. wow.. looks so good and amazing..

  13. The cake tasted as amazing as it looks !!! Wish you all could have a taste ..YUMMMY !!


    1. Thank you, Anu! I am so glad everyone enjoyed it.

  14. What a beautiful cake.Awesome work

  15. Pallu you did true justice to the Princess Cake, its BEAUTIFUL, awesome blossom, yummy in my tummy and a cake every little princess would want on her Birthday!!! Amazing stuff. BTW Happy Birthday to 'Tai' and lots of love and hugs to both of you, she being the inspiration and you being motivated :)


  16. This is amazing!!! It looks oh so professional!!
    I am sure must have tasted great too!! and i can imagine the happiness of the b'day girl...This was sweet of you :)

  17. Any girl would feel like a princess with that cake on her b'day!! What beautiful work you did - it doesn't look homemade at all. Superb!

  18. It's amazing! And the fact that it was made with so much love such makes it all the more special :) If someone made me that cake for my birthday I would stare at it for a few hours before I could manage to cut it! :)

  19. Cake was tasted so good as it looked. Pallavi, you did amazing job.


  20. Just look at that incredible cake! I think you nailed it, my friend. So sweet to make a little one happy on her birthday.

  21. Beautiful cake, my dear.. loved the flowers in the doll's hands too


  22. Every girl's dream this! Sweet of you to make the lil girl happy with this princess.

  23. Wow! This is so lovely. I've never had an opportunity to make a doll cake. You really knocked it out of the park. It's in my favorite color too. Love it :)

  24. This is so beautiful, no words to describe. Very pretty.

  25. Beautiful and yummy cake.. Amazing creativity.. I'm a new blogger... Do visit my blog..

  26. WOw this is absolutely wonderful! I thank you so much to be part of " get an aid in the kitchen". Just shered your recipe ! Best of luck!

  27. Wow! Your daughter is very lucky.

    Thanks for sharing so many great vegan recipes...

    global vegan fare

  28. I loved your frosting recipe. The cake looks very beautiful. How many hours before did you remove the cake from fridge before serving ??? Kindly let me know as this is the first time I am trying to bake a cake for my daughter's birthday a day before in advance. Thank you.

    1. Thank you, Anonymous. The frosting is delicious and fairly sturdy. That said, depending on your location, and the weather, take the cake out of the fridge.
      When I made this cake it was almost summer and therefore I kept it in the fridge until the last 15 minutes.
      In winter, I'd say take the cake out ~20-30 mins before you cut it, especially as heaters are on indoors.
      If you have any more questions, please do let me know. good luck and have fun at the party!


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