The centerpiece of every birthday party is naturally the cake. It took me a long time to come up with a design that I felt confident I could pull off for Max’s Dinosaur Birthday Party. In fact, I tried to cajole Max into cupcakes. At one point he reluctantly agreed, but I knew he really wanted a big, fabulous cake, so I kept the wheels kept turning.
Once I remembered the mini-bunt cake pan in the back of my cupboard, the whole design came together. The cake would be topped with a volcano! I made a miniature chocolate bunt cake and dripped it with a red glaze to mimic lava. The rest of the cake was very basic and easy to frost with green and brown buttercream frosting. Yum!
I sculpted dinosaurs out of marzipan, drawing inspiration from other cakes I found online. Those cakes used fondant, but that just doesn’t taste good to me. Deliciousness is a key criteria for everything I serve. Form can’t come before flavor when it comes to food. The month before, I had made a Peter Rabbit Garden Cake inspired by Martha Stewart and Max had gone crazy over the marzipan vegetables, so marzipan dinosaurs make sense. I sculpted them the night before which helped them harden a bit, but also caused a touch of droopiness.
Notice the little rocks around the edges. Those are actually specialty chocolates my mom picked up from my hometown. I am sure you could find something similar online or use jelly beans and malt balls as an alternative.
The crowing glory came when it was time to sing Happy Birthday. Right before serving, we put a small bottle cap with a little dry ice in the center of the bunt cake volcano. Then we poured just a touch of water to make the volcano smoke. It was spectacular! What a fantastic effect for a four year old’s birthday cake!
Gulp, he’s growing up so fast! Stop time, stop.