Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Elsa birthday cake

I mentioned yesterday that Lila wanted an "Elsa Cake" for her birthday, and after seeing this video on YouTube (via Pinterest), I decided to go for it myself. All in all, it turned out OK, Lila was thrilled and our guests were impressed, but I realized I am NOT a cake decorator and think I'll probably just BUY them in the future!!! 

To start, I bought an Elsa doll from the local store ($9). Then, make three cakes - two 8" rounds and a "dome" cake using a 1 quart Pyrex oven safe bowl. I used this recipe for the cakes and used boxed Duncan Hines "ultra moist" chocolate cake. For me, one box made all three. I baked the two rounds together at 350 for about 30 minutes (check the back of your box for cook times). The "dome" I lowered the heat a bit (per the video's instructions) and cooked for longer. 

While your cakes are cooling, make your frosting. I used this recipe for the frosting. I mixed in a few drops of blue food coloring until it made the perfect "Elsa color." 

When the cakes are cool, you can assemble. I put a generous "layer" of icing between each layer. Top with the "dome." Then cut a small circle hole in the top just big enough to fit Elsa (don't worry if it's messy at this point).

Then came my panic moment. When I'd made the cakes, I went against the directions and used a 1.5 quart Pyrex instead of 1 quart, which made for a wider, lower dome - apparently that was a bad idea, because when I went to stick the Elsa doll into the cake before decorating it, it only came up to her mid-thighs! EEK! I went into panic mode, thinking I'd need to bake another layer to raise it up, until Grant said - "can't you just rip her legs off?" Knowing Lila already had the same Elsa doll and that I wouldn't have time to bake, cool and decorate the cake before our guests arrived, off came the legs (#poorElsa).

Once she was "firmly" in place (sans legs), I began to decorate. I frosted the cake using the same frosting I used for the middle layers. Then I added a bit of green food coloring to the leftover icing to make a slightly darker color. Then I used a cake decorating tip to make little flowers around the rim and around Elsa's waist. 

Then I used a white icing gel pen from the store to make little snowflakes and "snow." It was far from perfect, but I "let it go" ... (I had to!) 

Ta da! Elsa and her "cake" dress. 

Here's what a cut piece looked like. It was DELICIOUS cake. I just needed a few adult beverages once it was completed. 

Recipe for Elsa Birthday Cake: 
1 Elsa doll (found at any toy store, Target, etc. Mine was $9 at Walmart)
1 box of chocolate cake mix
2 small boxes of instant chocolate pudding
1/2 cup of veggie oil
1 1/4 cups of water
4 eggs
1 cup of chocolate chips (plus more for garnish...I used the mini kind, but use what you have on hand)
Bake according to box directions and video directions via the links above. Let cool before decorating (I actually cooked mine the night before and assembled the next day).
Icing: 8 oz of cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 13 oz jar marshmallow cream
4 cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoon vanilla
Blue and green food coloring (add a few drops at a time for your desired color). 


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