Single Cake for 8 year old Boy and 9 year old Girl

by Tonya Schauwecker
(Toledo, Ohio)

Birthday Cake

Birthday Cake

My children are only 11 months and 11 days apart, so we celebrate their birthdays together every year. Usually I do one ice cream cake and one traditional cake; however, this year I decided to try something different.

I let both of my children design their own side of a 3 tiered cake, then split it down the middle. Sydney chose all things girlie (no surprise!) and Blake chose laser tag. I used Oprah's favorite chocolate cake for the bottom tier and vanilla cake for the top two tiers. The cake is covered in marshmallow fondant.

Chocolate Cake Recipe (from
2 sticks butter, softened
3 cups (firmly packed) dark brown sugar
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3/4 cup cocoa powder, sifted
1 tablespoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 cups cake flour (not self-rising)
1 1/2 cups sour cream
1 1/2 cups hot water

1.In a large bowl with an electric mixer, cream together butter and brown sugar on medium speed, about 5 minutes. In a separate bowl, combine eggs and vanilla; add to brown sugar mixture in two batches, mixing on medium speed until incorporated. Scrape bowl thoroughly; beat 1 minute on high speed.
2.Sift together cocoa powder, baking soda and salt; add to brown sugar mixture and beat on low speed until just combined.
3.Sift flour. Add 1 cup to batter and beat on low speed until just combined. Add 3/4 cup sour cream to batter; beat on low speed until just combined. Alternate adding flour and sour cream to batter until there's none left. With mixer still running on low, slowly add hot water, beating until just combined.
4.Scrape bowl thoroughly; beat batter on low speed about 20 seconds. Scrape bowl thoroughly once more, then divide batter
evenly among the three pans, about 3 cups per pan. Bake 30 to 33 minutes, or until cake pulls away from sides of pan. Remove from oven. Cool layers in pans about 30 minutes, then remove from pans and cool completely on wire racks. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate up to one night before assembling.

Vanilla Cake Recipe
2 cups white sugar
1 cup butter
4 eggs
1 tablespoon and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon and 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 cup milk

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9x9 inch pan or line a muffin pan with paper liners.
2. In a medium bowl, cream together the sugar and butter. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, then stir in the vanilla. Combine flour and baking powder, add to the creamed mixture and mix well. Finally stir in the milk until batter is smooth. Pour or spoon batter into the prepared pan.
3. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes in the preheated oven. For cupcakes, bake 20 to 25 minutes. Cake is done when it springs back to the touch.

Marshmallow Fondant (I made 2 batches.)
1 16oz. bags JetPuffed Marshmallows
4 cups sifted powdered sugar
2 tablespoons water
Pam or Crisco

Sift powdered sugar into large bowl. In wide, microwave safe bowl, add marshmallows and water - stir. Heat for 30 seconds, then stir. Continue heating and stirring until completely melted. When marshmallows are melted, add 3 or 4 cups of powdered sugar to the marshmallows and mix. Continue adding powdered sugar until no longer sticky. Spray counter with Pam or grease with Crisco. Dump the fondant on the prepared counter and continue kneeding until a smooth consistency for rolling.

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