I like to make birthdays a big deal at our house. I used to do elaborate cakes that literally took days to make. We're talking a life-sized guitar cake, a firetruck with a burning building that actually smoked, cakes that hung from the ceiling... INSANITY, my friends.
While I still love to make crazy cakes, they were taking so.much.time. And one day it occurred to me that I could spend just one day making a cake and throw a bunch of toys on top and my kids would be equally as awed and excited.
So now I'm a "one-day cake" kind of girl, and now I get to actually see my kids the week of their birthdays which is kind of cool.
Anyways, this is the cake I made my 4 year old several months ago for his birthday. The frosting is a basic buttercream that I use almost anytime I need buttercream. It has some heavy cream in it so it whips up a little lighter than traditional buttercream and it pipes well. This is definitely one to bookmark and use any time you need a quick, delicious, buttercream.
Basic Buttercream Frosting
Recipe adapted from Food.com
-3 cups powdered sugar
-1 cup butter
-1 Tbsp vanilla
-1 Tbsp (or less) heavy whipping cream*
With an electric mixer, cream together sugar and butter on low speed until combined. Increase speed to medium and beat for 3 minutes.
Add vanilla and heavy cream and beat 1 minute longer.
*You can add another Tbsp heavy cream if needed to get this buttercream to a thinner spreading consistency. For piping, and most frosting jobs, a bit less than 1 Tbsp cream is perfect.