This weekend we celebrated my husband Andy’s 35th birthday! This was really exciting for us as it was the first birthday celebration we were able to host in our own home (our last house was waaaaay too tiny to host his large family all under one roof). It was really great having everyone over for what turned out to be a lovely afternoon spent indulging in entirely too much pizza, ice cream and cake covered with Andy’s favorite frosting: Whipped mocha.
Typically, I pair this frosting with marble cake and an apricot filling but it really does taste great with any kind of cake. Andy actually asked for a devil’s food cake this year and the added chocolate made the dessert extra decadent.
I was really missing the apricot filling though so I decided to also whip up a batch of yellow cupcakes and fill them with apricot preserves!
While I’m still very new to cake decorating, I tried to make both the cake and cupcakes fun by piping details with a star tip and throwing some colorful sprinkles on the cupcakes.
Adding to the whimsy, I displayed the treats on stands. Doing so really helps elevate your display and makes grabbing for a treat extra fun for your guests!
The Pioneer Woman cake stand featured in these photos is so adorable and I honestly leave it out on my counter all the time. Its farmhouse charm adds to my kitchen decor and it is perfect for storing all kinds of goodies including cookies, bars, brownies and doughnuts. I can honestly say it’s one of my favorite kitchen items!
I’m also loving this cupcake stand, which holds up to 13 treats. One thing I especially love about it is that it unscrews into three pieces, making it incredibly easy to store in your cabinets. This also makes it portable for displays on the go! Bring it to parties or family gatherings for a more sophisticated display.
To check out my recipe for whipped mocha frosting, click here. I promise you’ll use it again and again – it’s so tasty!
And to shop the items featured in this post, click on the links below:
Pioneer Woman Cake Stand
Wilton Dessert Stand
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A special post-birthday shout-out to my boyfriend Andy who turned 33 this week! While last year we celebrating by exploring the fabulous town of Skaneateles, this year we celebrated by going out to eat at SUMO hibachi and later enjoying his favorite cake – a marble filled with apricot preserves and topped with a rich mocha frosting.
Here’s how to make it:
For the cake:
- 1 box of marble cake mix (I’ve mentioned before that the men in my family prefer box-cake. Thankfully, it’s a great solution when you are looking to save time and feature your frosting.)
- 1 cup water
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 3 large eggs
For the filling:
- 1/2 jar of Smucker’s Apricot Preserves, 18 oz
For the frosting:
- 1 cup salted butter, room temperature (or unsalted, if preferred)
- 2 tbs instant coffee granules
- 1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
- 3-4 cups powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup melted semi-sweet chocolate– cooled slightly (you can use chocolate chips for this)
- Bake the cake according to the instructions on the box, using two 9-inch rounds.
- Let cake cool completely.
- Spread the apricot preserves over the first round. Be generous, as the cake will absorb the preserves over time.
- To prepare frosting, whip butter and instant coffee granules together until fluffy.with an electric mixer.
- Turn mixer to medium/high speed and slowly pour in whipping cream and whip until the mixture is light and fluffy.
- Mix in vanilla extract and melted chocolate while whipping on medium/high speed.
- Turn mixer speed down to medium/low and slowly add in your powdered sugar 1/2 cup at a time until the frosting has reached your desired thickness.(Tip: If you are using a strong variation of instant coffee, you will want to use the full four cups of sugar to balance the bitterness of the granules.)
- Gently place the second round of your cake atop the first.
- Generously apply frosting to the top and sides of your cake.
- If desired, decorate with chocolate chips and cocoa powder.
Original frosting recipe retrieved from http://www.bakeaholicmama.com/2014/01/chocolate-cake-with-whipped-mocha.html. The recipe has been altered from its original format.
Out of all the shaped and festive cakes you could make for various holidays, this is probably the absolute easiest. I first tried making this Easter bunny cake last year and cannot stress how incredibly simple it was to make and assemble.
So if you are looking to create a simple (but adorable) holiday goody, you have come to the right place!
While I chose to make a carrot cake (for obvious reasons) you can essentially use any cake with a spongy consistency. This means using a cake that is moist as opposed to crumbly so that it won’t fall apart when you cut it into shapes.
If you are a box-cake kind of person, that’s totally OK! Cakes made from baking mixes tend to be quite moist and should hold up when you are slicing into it.
Bake the cake in 2 nine-inch pans. Leave one of the circles in tact and cut the other into three pieces to make the bow tie and bunny ears.
Last year I used canned cream cheese frosting for lack of time, and the cake was no worse for it. This year however, I plan on making my own frosting. This recipe looks promising.
Adorn the bunny’s face using colored frosting, candy or whatever strikes your fancy! I also used sprinkled nutmeg to add texture.
So there you have it: simplest shaped cake in the world. I hope everyone has a happy Easter and that it is filled with delicious foods and sweets!
(This year’s cake:)