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A Beginners Guide for Making a Birthday Cake

Blowing out the candles on a birthday cake while people sing happy birthday out of tune is a rite of passage that everyone needs to celebrate as they turn another year older. While it is easy to pop to the shops to buy a ready-made cake, there is something special about making a birthday cake for a loved one. And it isn’t too expensive to do either! Cakes are easy to make once you know what to do and can be fun as well, not to mention provide you with a sense of accomplishment.

If you have never made a birthday cake before, then don’t fret! This guide aims to help you create the best birthday cake that will make your loved one feel all the more special.

Investigate what your loved one likes

Before you start whipping out your apron and mixing bowl, you need to first find out what the birthday boy or girl loves. If you are making a cake for your child, consider the TV shows that they love watching or a favorite toy they have, as you can use this as inspiration to start researching ideas.

If you are making for a friend or older family member, you can consider TV shows, films or hobbies they like, but this is also a good opportunity to find out if they prefer a particular type of cake. They might love vanilla sponge but hate chocolate cake. Find this out before you start baking.

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Find a recipe

Once you know what your loved one loves, and if there are any flavor preferences, you can start researching a recipe. There are hundreds of websites dedicated to cake recipes that will take you through the cake making process. Don’t forget, however, that you can always turn to your old cookbooks or Grandma’s handwritten recipe. Your dad might love you digging up a traditional family recipe.

Make the cake

Once you have found the recipe for the cake you want to make, you will need to follow the instructions step by step. Always ensure that you have the right measurements before you start. If the recipe uses different measurement units than you are used to, then make sure you have converted to something you are more familiar with, e.g., grams into cups or vice versa. To make the cake, you will generally need to pre-heat the oven and prepare your tins. You will then mix the dry ingredients in a separate bowl to your wet ingredients. Once both are mixed, you will combine the two, and once fully mixed, can pour the mixture into the pans and bake for the appropriate time.

Top Tip: Use a skewer to insert into the cake to see whether it comes out clean to confirm the cake is cooked. You can also press down on the cake gently and see if it springs back up.

Don’t forget to decorate

This is the best bit about making a cake! You can let your imagination run wild with plenty of edible treats to place on top. However, you can also personalize the cake for the person you are making it for with edible cake decorations, such as personalized cake toppers that you can customize with their name and age. This is where you can refer to the information you found out about what your loved one loves. You could finish the cake off with an Angry Birds cake topper if they love the computer game, for example, or a personalized Harry Potter cake topper, if they love the magical film series. Personalize it with what they like and it will make birthday celebrations all the more special!

Make the frosting

While you wait for the cake to cool down, you can get started on the frosting. You can tailor the color of the icing to the person you are making the cake for. If your daughter loves Peppa Pig, pink would be a good choice; however, if you are making one for your other half and they love playing golf, then a green frosting could be perfect as you can recreate a golf course on the top and the icing can act as the grass.