I have twins and we always try to pick a theme they can both be happy with. This year was a Tye-Dye beach theme since we had our first beach vacation earlier in the summer. Because they are twins I like to give them each their own cake, hence two castles connected together. Also gave me the chance to play with different cake flavors. One was chocolate, the other yellow with raspberry filling. All the kids went for the chocolate, the adults preferred the yellow with filling.
For each cake I started with a 6" inch round (3" deep) and two 4" rounds (they were actually mini cheese cake pans). My daughter only likes cream cheese frosting which makes things a little trickier since it is softer than most icing, but it still turned out great. In order to make the frosting sand color, I blended in ½ cup melted butterscotch chips. This gave the frosting a beautiful sandy look and a yummy rich flavor.
For the sand I ground up graham crackers in the food processor to ultra fine. I mixed in some raw sugar (the really course natural sugar). Be sure to not over sprinkle the sand mixture on the icing. I had to sprinkle some in my hands and press to the sides to get it to stick in some places. Be sure to sprinkle the sand on immediately before the icing starts to harden. I used an ice cream cone for the top spire covered with icing. The castle décor is mostly graham cracker sticks broken in half.
The shells are made from chocolate molds. I swirled together white chocolate, dark chocolate and butterscotch. The water is blue glitter icing gel made by Wilton. Then I added a couple of palm trees I picked up from the Dollar Tree. To finish off the display I spread icing and sprinkled it with the sand mixture to finish off the beach.
My kids loved it and it was really not all that hard to make. Besides sandcastles are never perfect.