Children’s Birthday Cakes

Have you ever fancied having a go at making and decorating your child's birthday cake, but were afraid to try it in case it all went horribly wrong? The great thing about making your own birthday cake and decorating cakes is you know exactly what ingredients are in them and you can avoid nasty additives, as well as anything that your child dislikes or that causes allergies.

Equipment

You need to have the right equipment before you start. To make a simple cake, you don’t need anything fancy, but there are a few essentials:

  • Cake tins, preferably non-stick
  • Greaseproof paper (to line the base of the tins)
  • Cooling rack
  • Mixing bowl/food processor
  • Rolling pin (for fondant icing)
  • Palette knife or large flat knife for smoothing butter icing

Here are some more easy-to-prepare birthday cake ideas:

  • Caterpillar
    Made from a wavy row of chocolate-covered marshmallows. Make a face and decorate the body with sweets and use chocolate sticks for antennae and legs.
  • Train
    Use a whole Swiss roll for the engine, then two carriages made from a second one, cut in half horizontally. You can load the carriages with sweets for cargo. Finish the train with funnels and wheels made from mini rolls and tracks made from chocolate sticks.
  • Castle
    Add ice-cream cone 'turrets' to the corners of a square cake to make a fairy tale castle.
  • Treasure box
    Cut a square cake in half horizontally and stand one half upright behind the other. Cover with chocolate icing. When it's dry, pile gold and silver chocolate coins inside the 'casket' as treasure.
  • Fort
    Cover a square chocolate cake in chocolate butter cream. Stick chocolate fingers all around the sides. Add coconut or sugar coloured green around the bottom of the fort, to look like grass.