For my friend Sayna's 26th Birthday party, she was having a pink princess theme! So I decided to use the Wilton kit as I thought it gave the best shape and did lots of research online regarding decoration for a princess cake.
Baking the cake was a disaster! All of the recipes in the instructions and online are for the US market - we don't have the same boxes of cake mix in the UK, so it was difficult to work out how much mix I needed.
I made a 6 egg chocolate cake first. Even though it would have filled 3 8inch pans, it was not enough mix- the pan wasn't even half full! Next I tried a 10 egg vanilla sponge mix. This spilled out all over my brand new oven! I thought okay, I'll live with it, I'll just cut the level off the base but then after 2 hours in the oven it sank! I tried using ready made mixes, but they tasted really awful. I tried some other recipes and differing oven temperatures and they would turn out really heavy.
In the end I tried a different recipe where the egg whites are whipped and folded in last. I started the final one at 7pm the day before the party and I finally finished the cake at 5am!! The cake took over 2.5hours in the oven (fan oven on cake setting) at 140c.
I sliced the cake using dental floss (great tip from this website!) and sandwiched it with pink coloured vanilla flavoured buttercream (made using unsalted butter and icing sugar) and strawberry jam. I then covered the whole cake in pink buttercream.
I made 10 tapered sausages as per the Wilton instructions to make the folds of the skirt. For ease and speed, I planned to use ready-rolled fondant icing for the skirt, but found that the circle was not big enough to cover. So I rolled some more icing from a block, coloured it pink and did the 2 layer skirt.
For the bodice, I coloured some fondant icing pink, moistened it slightly with water and pressed onto it the edible pink glitter crystals. I then had to mould this round the doll pick before it dried. I had cut a straight line for the top, but moulded the sweetheart neckline once on with my fingers.
I set the doll pick in the cake after having applied some of my own earrings (I just pushed them into the rubber head to make holes) and making a crown from thick tin foil.
I needed something to hide the join of the skirt, so I plaited some icing. I made a bow for the back and studded the pink skirt with silver edible balls just by pushing them on. I had planned to do elaborate decoration, but I practiced icing with various nozzles and found it difficult to do neatly.
For presenting the cake I added a number 2 and 6 candle and put an indoor sparkler in each of the dolls hands and pierced the cake with the unlit end. It looked fabulous, however the poor dolls arms nearly caught fire!
TIP: use dental floss to slice the cake layers! TIP: use jam that comes in a squeezy bottle rather than a jar - much easier! TIP: hold the layers of the cake together while icing with 2 skewers threaded vertically TIP: keep the design of the dress simple and don't use too many colours.