Serious “Mother of the Year” props go out to me this year for Maggie’s 9th birthday! Not.
For 10 years, I have been making homemade cakes for my kiddies. Let’s remember, I am not a baker. I don’t really enjoy it because of its precision. I am no Martha when it comes to baking from scratch (except for my Ammaw’s coffee cake) so those cake mixes in the store were probably meant for me. But I do it…I make birthday cakes from scratch.
I only manage to get through the baking part because I look forward to the decorating part!
My cakes are always a wildly fun presentation to my kiddies. My little ones give me a theme and I run with it!
I can really get a party started in my kitchen!! I turn my table into a birthday centerpiece! The presents, the wrapping paper, the plates, the napkins, the banner, the confetti, the junk draped on the chandelier, and even their little outfits follow whatever theme or celebration they desire. Even Bill finds an appropriate celebratory song to be blasted from the stereo, which in turn, creates a dance party centered around the birthday kid. It is always fun!!!
Some of my cakes have been masterpieces while others were barely deserving of a photo…they were total messes. But I tried.
I confess though (and only to you all, not my MC), that I just didn’t have the time to bake a cake from scratch on Sunday or Monday for Mags’ birthday.
Yep, pass me that award!
I did not put aside some time to bake my 9 year old her traditional birthday cake. And worse yet, her daddy had to be in Chicago on her birthday. We are really winning at this middle child thing.
Mags didn’t really have her usual theme request this year either, but that didn’t get me off the hook. I was anticipating one of her latest interests to be her theme…Shopkins, basketball, or dance. But my girl just requested that it has to have some chocolate and some vanilla.
I had to come up with a quick solution because even though I didn’t have time to mix and bake the cake, I still wanted to give her a “homemade-ish-looking” cake. This totally puts me in my element…gathering ideas and getting creative.
My inspiration came from an adorable set of donut plates and a sweet donut gift bag I bought from TJ Maxx a few months ago. What is more chocolate and vanilla than donuts, am I right?
Then I spotted these at my local grocery store. Ready-made pudding cakes…with a hole in the center…like a donut. I’m back in “mom makes the most fun birthday cakes” mode and I don’t even have to bake! Grocery store to the rescue! Whew!
It was time for a Cakeover! My plan was to stack these and try to create a gigantic donut. If I could just achieve the right shape, then I knew with a few “cosmetics,” I could transform this boring cake into a gorgeous showstopper!
With a long, sharp knife, I leveled the top of the vanilla marble cake first.I cut corners any chance I could get because the school bus was due to arrive home in the next hour, so I did not make homemade icing either. I took this fudge icing and melted it for 30 seconds in the microwave so that I could spoon it into the center of the cake where I hollowed out a space. I popped it in the refrigerator for a few minutes to set and then decided to add sprinkles too, though I didn’t snap that pic. Mags will love this when she cuts it open!
Then it was time to attempt to contour, sculpt and shape the top of this cake into a rounded looking donut. I carefully shaved thin pieces of cake off the top until I was happy.I tried placing the chocolate cake on top of the other vanilla marble cake but it was looking a little too gigantic, so I cut a few inches off the bottom of the chocolate before stacking.
And then because I am so particular with the decorating, I cut a bigger hole in the center and even tried to cut away the corner of the base to give it a rounder looking bottom edge, similar to a donut.
I didn’t even pull out my food coloring collection. Yep, just bought the pre-dyed pink stuff. Don’t judge.
I popped this in the microwave for 15 seconds at a time, stirring in between, until I achieved the right consistency to be able to pour the icing over the top of my “donut.” Allowing the icing to drip over the edges gave me the dipped donut look I was going for.
This gigantic treat was missing the best part! While the icing was still wet, I completed the look with a few rainbow sprinkles! Isn’t the donut with all the sprinkles the one that every little kid desires?
With all that chocolate, vanilla, pink icing and sprinkles, I’m pretty sure Mags was thrilled with this semi-homemade cake!This Cakeover was a success!I’m loving the new look, perfectly topped with 9 candles! Best of all, my girl was happy and she loved that little surprise inside the cake!
The kids devoured the cake and there were no mentions of my grocery store purchase…so, I just might have to try this again for another birthday party. Shhhh. Don’t tell.
Did you ever do a Cakeover with a grocery store cake?
You can see all my cake messes and masterpieces through the years here.