Naptime Gnome #42
This is actually a post I wrote several months ago but never posted. Just found it in my files, while you guessed it, trying to become more organized! So keep in mind the commentary is about 7 months old.
So Baby Bug is quickly becoming Big Bug! I can’t believe she’s already two! She’s singing up a storm and has a beautiful opinion about just about everything (yes, being opinionated is still gorgeous to me… check back with me in the teenage years ;). So when we started talking about her upcoming birthday, of course she had all sorts of things to say.
My favorite portion of any birthday is the chance to design a fun cake. Even though ice cream isn’t a common feature in our home these days, our Bug has her methods of sneaking bites from all her Grandpas, whom she has tightly wound around each of her precious little fingers. So of course, when she discovered ice cream cake at a friend’s party a few months back she was hooked! Her first request was that ice cream be involved and even though I felt EXTREMELY guilty leaving Little Bear out of this one, Daddy Bear reminded me that it is, after all, HER birthday and not his. I offered to make him his own cake, but he assured me he would be more than happy if I would make extra fondant for him… I don’t know why he likes fondant so much.
She thought for a bit and then lit up just prior to blurting, “Grandma DOLLY CAKE!” This one caught me by surprise! So about 6 months prior we had been at my Grandparent’s and some relatives where reminiscing when the topic of the amazing cakes my grandma used to make came up. One of my mom’s cousins mentioned all the great Barbie cakes she used to do for the girls and Bug hadn’t forgotten! Though Grandma had about 50 years of Barbie cakes under her apron, it’d been some time since she’d decorated. So with the vast treasury of baking and decorating supplies Grandma had bequeathed me a few years back, I embraced the opportunity to keep Grandma’s Barbie cake legacy alive.
The only major issue was I had NO idea where to start on an ice cream cake! So after a little research and a GREAT tip on how to make those perfect layers, I was ready!I went with angel food cake because I’m not much of a traditional cake fan… with this one exception! And since the gluten and casein free gig was up for this one project, I decided to go all out!
I opted for Dryer’s/Eddy’s Ice Cream in Vanilla Bean partly because it tastes delightful and the color would be light enough to dye pink… oh, I didn’t mention this was supposed to be a PINK Barbie Cake did I? But the most important reason for this choice was the shape of the carton! That awesome little recipe of inspiration from allrecipes.com recommends the rectangle cartons to make perfect rectangular cakes, but I needed a perfect circle for my perfect circular dress cake.
So after mixing, baking, cooling, trimming, cutting, and stacking we had this:I was feeling pretty good at this point! Cleared some room in the garage freezer so I could take out a shelf and stash her in the full and upright position in between steps.
The next step was to smear ice cream all over the exterior of the cake to smooth it out. So I mixed up a bit of ice cream until it was creamy, but not melted and began smearing as fast as possible.This was when Little Bug began to take notice. As I was smoothing out the dress, Little Bug happened through the kitchen and declared, “ELSA!” Mommy’s brain immediately blurted, “Oh… (insert favorite imagined profanity here),” luckily the lips said, “You’re right! She does look like Elsa!” I threw her back in the freezer and moved on to the pantry to search for blue food coloring. SUCCESS!
So I started mixing blue fondant (I use marshmallow fondant, it’s cheap, easy, and I switch out coconut oil for butter so my Little Bear can eat it… and even though the rest of this was a gluten/dairy fiesta, I had a promise to uphold!). I was going to have to match the fondant for the bodice to the ice cream frosting for the skirt, so I started whipping the ice cream in a chilled (put in the freezer over night) mixer bowl with a bit of blue food coloring and added slowly until the color I was hoping for was achieved. Then I made two shades of blue fondant, and mixed a little bit of each together, adding a bit from the lighter or darker shades as needed until it matched the ice cream.
After she was good and “Frozen,” her skirt got a little “ombre” color with some sparkly gel frosting, and she got her bodice and sleeves and cape (all of which were just fondant): She was then stashed back in the freezer until showtime!
Here she is, ready for the birthday girl! Happy Birthday my sweet and lovely Bug!
-The Naptime Gnome <;’)