Sunday, April 13, 2014

Volcano Cake!

Speaking of birthdays I just realized that I never ended up sharing the awesome volcano cake I made for my hubby's birthday! It was pretty epic and I really believe that it deserves to be shared. It was made with 1.5 boxes of cake mix, an entire jar of jam and a whole lotta icing! If you've got a special birthday coming up that requires a Volcano cake don't panic--it's not as hard to make as you might think. Read on for my step by step instructions on how to create the perfect (and scientifically accurate!) Volcano cake.


- 1 box Chocolate cake mix
- 1 box Rainbow Sprinkles cake mix
- 2 small (or one large) container of chocolate frosting
- 1 large jar raspberry jam, warmed and thinned
- small bag of stick pretzels
- bag of shaved coconut
- green food colouring
- miniature plastic dinosaurs


1. Mix both cake batters according to directions in seperate bowls and preheat oven. Fill one round cake pan (8x8 or 9x9) with chocolate batter, and one round cake pan with rainbow batter. Bake according to package directions and set aside to cool.
2. Using left over batter from both bowls make your own "marble" batter in an oven safe glass bowl by adding a little of one, and then some of the other. Bake the marble batter until a toothpick comes out clean. Set aside to cool.
3. Loosen the chocolate and rainbow cakes from the tins and stack them on top of each other with a layer of raspberry jam in the middle.
4. Once cooled, loosen the marble cake from the bowl and place ontop of the other two layers, again with a layer of jam between them. So you should now have three layers of cake, with two layers of jam. Using a large serrated knife trim on an angle the bottom two layers to create a sloped edge. Using the same knife cut out a small circle shape in the top of the smallest cake to create a little well that you can fill fill with jam. (Like picture below)

5. Once the cake is assembled you can apply your first layer of frosting to help seal it. Make this rough, it doesn't need to be neat and precise.... it's a volcano after all! Place in the fridge overnight to chill cake and set frosting.
6. Remove from fridge and apply a much thicker layer of frosting taking to care to help "shape" your volcano into a nice sloping shape. Again, this doesn't need to be smooth and shouldn't be, because it's meant to look like rock. Make sure to leave your hole at the top so you can add the rest of the lava later.

7. Take the remaining jam and warm it up to thin it out a little bit. Keep spooning it into the middle of the cake in the hole you carved out until it starts to over flow and drip down the cake. Add some spoonfuls to the natural patterns that emerged to thicken the lines up a bit. Put cake back into fridge as quickly as possible to "set" the jam by thickening it back up when it cools. This will help it to stay in a flowing pattern without all pooling on your tray instead.
8. Place some of your coconut shavings into a bowl and add a few drops of green food colouring. Mix thoroughly to coat the coconut. It doesn't take much food colouring so just keep mixing it. Once you've got your coconut coloured you can take a pretzel stick and dip one end into some of the leftover frosting and then roll it around in the coconut to create a little tree. Stick as many trees as you'd like randomly into your volcano. 

9. The finishing touch is to add a few plastic mini dinosaurs and you're all set! Keep cake chilled until you're ready to serve and enjoy!

The cake looks awesome once it's cut as well and you can see all the layers inside. The lava even started to drip down on the inside too. Yuuuuum! Happy cake making!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Birthday Sneak Peak

It's almost here--It's almost here!! The boy-o will be turning one on the 20th of April and I can't believe it's less than 2 weeks away already. I've decided that I need to get my act together a bit more and get going on his party decoration stuff and getting things organized (loot bags, food lists etc.) There's so much to think about when you're doing it all yourself, but the cost savings will be totally worth it! I can't wait to make his Pirate themed cake too!!

In the meantime, I've been working on making the boy-o a "birthday chalkboard" after seeing some of the lovely ones that my friends had put together for their wee ones. They're such a great source of inspiration! I tried downloading some photo editing software to design it and ended up getting frustrated beyond belief, so I just stuck with simple Paint. Although it's much harder to fix errors, it's also much simpler to work with as there's way less of a learning curve. I'll get the chalkboard printed out on an 8X10 paper and framed, and we'll use it as photo prop for our little mini photo shoot.

Here's a sneak peak of the chalkboard:

I think this will make a nice colourful keepsake, and I did it up in the colours of his room and play area (Red, Blue, Yellow, and Green) It wasn't that hard to make once I gave up on the fancy software, and I would encourage you to think about making one to celebrate your little one's birthday milestones.