So for my son’s dinner at home with sitter I made cupcakes, then dinner with friends and his party at Chuck E Cheese’s (hate the place- torture for parents, bliss for kids) cakes with the vanilla cake recipe and meringue frosting with variations. I only made 12 cupcakes so I halved the recipe. For the birthday party cake I made one layer chocolate and a middle layer of vanilla ice cream with crushed Twix bars. If you read my post from my youngest’s birthday party in November my attempts at making an ice cream layer cake was a disaster. This time I got it right. Everyone seemed to like it though the cake itself was much harder than the ice cream. Not sure how to remedy that.
Traditional Vanilla Birthday Cake (Adapted from Magnolia Bakery)
2 sticks butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 large eggs, room temp
2¾ cups flour
1½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp salt
1 cup milk
2 tsp vanilla
Preheat oven to 350F. Grease 2 round cake pans and line bottom with parchment paper. Sift flour, salt and baking powder together twice and set aside. Mix milk and vanilla and set aside. Using electric mixer cream the butter until smooth and gradually add sugar. Beat until fluffy then add eggs one at a time, continuing to beat well. Add flour and milk alternating each in 4 parts, beating well after each addition. Divide batter among the two pans. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden and cake springs back when pressed slightly or toothpick comes out clean. Let cool on rack before removing from pans. Frost when completely cool.
- If using ice cream as layer, put cakes in freezer for at least an hour after cooling. Soften ice cream until spreadable and store in freezer until nearly ready to serve.
- I added half a pack of chocolate pudding mix to my finished batter once I poured half in one cake pan so one layer was chocolate.
- For cupcakes, just divide among lined muffin tins and bake for 20 minutes. I used naturally colored sprinkles I found at Whole Foods.
- For friends’ visit cake I made a chocolate cream layer by whipping cream, adding 1 tsp gelatin dissolved over cold water, and ½ package of melted chocolate chips. I used up the leftover frosting from the cupcakes, which only half covered the cake. It didn’t look as pretty, but was still pretty delicious!
Magnolia Bakery’s Meringue Frosting (“Fluff” frosting)
3 egg whites
1½ tsp vanilla
½ cup cold water
1½ cups sugar
just over ¼ tsp cream of tartar
Combine egg whites and vanilla in mixing bowl and set aside. In saucepan over high heat combine the water, sugar and cream of tartar. Bring to a boil stirring once, then let boil for 2-3 minutes and remove immediately. On medium high speed of electric mixer, beat the egg whites and vanilla with whisk attachment for about one minute until foamy. Without turning off mixer, pour sugar syrup into egg whites in a thin, steady stream. Continue to beat for about 5 minutes until stiff peaks form. For stickier frosting(more marshmallowy consistency) continue to beat longer.
Only kids without sweet-tooths would not like these! And, there are no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives so you can let them have a treat and not worry as much.