I can tell you right now that one of the greatest joys of my life will be making my boys’ birthday cakes year after year. I love nothing more than homemade chocolate cake, and when I’m making one for such a happy joyous occasion, my heart explodes. I can’t wait to make them in the form of C-3PO or Batman or Sponge Bob of whoever these little guys of mine are obsessed with at the moment. And BTW, they WILL each get their own cake every year. They didn’t this year because they just really have no idea, and I personally am not in a place where I need two birthday cakes kicking around the house. I simply cannot control myself.
I’m not going to say how fast this year went because that’s a given. What has truly surprised me though is the amount of shear joy I get from these two little boys, and the strong bond that we have after only one year of life together. I can’t imagine a world without them in it. I also can’t imagine having only one of them – they are undeniably a perfect pair and my heart grew times a thousand to make room for the true love and obsession I have for these two baby boys.
Onto the cake. Just to put it out there, I am a terrible froster, terrible cake slicer, terrible artist, and I have zero patience for cake decorating. When I make my own birthday cake I literally slap on the frosting and douse it in sprinkles. So when you consider making this cake, a) you’ll obviously note my less than perfect frosting job – but I’m telling myself that’s part of the baby theme and b) know that if I can make this, you FOR SURE can. There’s something about my hands that just don’t agree with frosting cakes. So. I would definitely say as far as shaped cakes go, this is easy!
What you’ll need:
- 2 8 inch round cake pans, buttered, floured, and lined with parchment (bottom)
- 1 3.5 inch round cookie cutter
- 1 large marshmallow
- 2 flat chocolate discs (or something similar, for eyeballs)
- Black gel icing (in a tube)
- 5 cups powdered sugar, sifted
- 2 sticks butter, room temperature
- 1/4 cup + 1-2 tablespoons milk, divided
- 2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted and divided
- 1/3 cup semi- sweet chocolate chips, melted
Make the cake in the two 8 inch round pans, and let cool completely. One will be for the face, the other will be used for the ears and nose. Level the cake with a serrated knife if necessary. Using the cookie cutter, cut out 3 circles from one of the cakes. One will be the snout, the other two will be the ears. Using a knife, cut off little rounded edges on the bottom of the ears so that they can lay flat against the top of the head.
To make the frosting, cream the butter and powdered sugar together. Add the vanilla and 1/4 cup of the milk. Add in just 1 tablespoon of the cocoa. This will be the light brown frosting for the ears and snout. Remove about 1 cup of this frosting to a separate bowl. In main bowl, add in remaining 4 tablespoons cocoa powder, melted chocolate chips, and remaining 1 tablespoon of milk (more as needed). Frost the bear’s face and ears with the dark chocolate frosting. Frost the snout with the light brown, and add little dollops of the light brown for the center of the ears.
For the eye, cut two white eyeballs from the marshmallow by cutting off either end about 1/8 inch thick. Secure the chocolate disk onto the marshmallow using a little frosting. Place the frosted snout on the bear’s face, then add the eyes on top. Paint on a nose and mouth with the black gel. And that’s it! The snout tasted the best.