Our mummy blogger Anneliese says: ‘I love celebrations. It’s a great excuse for a party with lots of pretty and delicious food. I can spend ages planning what to cook for a birthday party and wondering what cakes will look the best on a beautiful cake stand. I am a big fan of food in miniature form and I know it appeals to children too. I’ve made little cakes in the past so I decided to try something a little different; I opted for biscuit ‘cakes’! I hope you have lots of fun making these three tiered biscuit birthday cakes, layered with strawberry jam and smothered in white chocolate and plenty of sprinkles!’
- 85g unsalted butter, softened
- 100g caster sugar
- 1 large egg
- ½tsp vanilla extract
- 200g plain flour
- ½tsp baking powder
- For the decoration:
- Approximately 16tsp smooth strawberry jam
- 75g white chocolate
- 1tsp sunflower oil
- A multitude of sprinkles
Why not ask your child either to line two baking trays with greaseproof paper or lightly grease the trays with butter. While they are happily occupied you can gather up all the necessary ingredients and hunt for a 2 ½ inch round cutter.
Grab your mixing bowl and weigh in the caster sugar and butter. Hopefully the butter is super soft as this will make it far easier and quicker to combine with the sugar. You can of course help your little one to use an electric hand whisk, but my three year old prefers a quieter wooden spoon. Whichever method you use, mix well until the mixture turns pale and fluffy in appearance.
If your child is anxious to crack the egg, then why not let them have a go. Just be sure it is cracked into a separate bowl so that any stray pieces of shell can be easily fished out! The egg can then be mixed into the sugar and butter mixture, along with the vanilla extract.
After giving the mixture a really good frantic mix it’s time to give those little arms a rest. The plain flour and baking powder can now be weighed into the mixing bowl. Carefully fold the flour and baking powder into the rest of the ingredients in a gentle but firm manner! I must admit that my little boy was soon asking for my assistance, as it takes a few minutes to form a soft, smooth dough.
Tear off some cling film and wrap it around the soft biscuit dough, flatten into a fat slab and tuck it in the fridge for about an hour to chill.
You could use this time to encourage your little one to wash and tidy up or you could sit down with a cup of tea and leave it until later!
The hour of chilling time will be over before you know it and then the fun really begins! Preheat your oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas mark 4 while you cut out the biscuits.
Dust flour over the worktop and onto your rolling pin. Help your child to roll out the dough to about the thickness of a pound coin, approximately ½ cm. Your budding little chef can now squeal with delight as they cut out the circle shapes with the cutter. Perhaps you can transfer the biscuits to the awaiting baking trays while your child is kept busy with the cutter. You should have enough dough to make 30 round biscuits.
If you wish to put a candle into each ‘cake’ then you will need to make a hole in the middle of 10 of the biscuits. I think it might be best for you to take over at this point, unless you have an older child. I used a plastic straw to cut a little hole from the middle of the 10 biscuits. Don’t panic if you forget to do this before you put the biscuits in the oven. You can cut out the pieces when the biscuits are half baked or fresh from the oven; in fact it’s probably a little easier (less sticky), but be careful, the dough will be hot!
Place the biscuits into the oven to cook for 8 – 12 minutes. Once the biscuits are cooked, place onto a wire rack to cool while you prepare the decoration.
Weigh the white chocolate into a small microwavable bowl along with the sunflower oil. Heat in the microwave on a medium setting until the chocolate has melted. Be sure to take the bowl from the microwave and give the chocolate a stir every 10 seconds, to avoid burning. Leave to one side.
Your child will no doubt enjoy transferring teaspoonfuls of sticky jam into a small bowl. I spent ages trying to stop my little boy from licking his fingers, but to no avail. We didn’t share with friends or family!!
Once the biscuits are cold, things will get even messier but the fun factor will definitely outweigh the sticky worktop or the jam in your little one’s hair!
Spread jam over 10 biscuits which will form the bottom tier of the ‘cakes’ and then spread more jam onto the 10 biscuits which will become the middle tier, sandwich the two biscuits together. Repeat this process 10 times!
Move your attention to the bowl of melted white chocolate. Spread the chocolate over the surface of the biscuits with the hole in the middle. Place the chocolate biscuits on top of the jammy middle tier of each ‘cake’ and then carry on until all the birthday biscuit cakes are constructed.
Time to go crazy with the sprinkles. Your children will love making the ‘cakes’ look pretty.
Place a candle into each hole. If you do not like the idea of using candles, then simply make the biscuits, omitting the holes. They will still look like pretty mini birthday cakes!
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Swap the white chocolate for milk or dark instead for a different look. You could also take it on step further and add a drop of food colouring to the white chocolate