Every year for the girls birthdays, I make a special cake (here are pictures of them). For Amelia’s first birthday, Trevor and I made a teapot, for year 2, it was a bear, for year 3, it was a unicorn and this year, Amelia requested the Number 4 in rainbow form.
So, here we are – it’s the ‘easiest’ cake I’ve had to make so far, and it wasn’t super easy. But I’ll say, it wasn’t super hard either. I kept it simple this year because we made it together and that was good enough for me.
The easy part of this cake is that it’s made out of 1 square tin. The hard part is getting the measurements right to cut each piece out…. I will say that none of my cakes are ever perfect, but that’s just the way I like them.
I hope you make this cake and your little one loves it just as much as mine did. 🙂
Number 4 Birthday Cake
For the cake:
- 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter
- 2 cups granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons pure (or homemade) vanilla extract
- 4 large eggs
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
- 1 3/4 cups whole milk
For the frosting:
- 2 cups heavy whipping cream
- 1 teaspoon pure (or homemade) vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Butter 1 square 9×9 cake pan or line it with wax paper/parchment paper and butter the paper.
- With a hand mixer or a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, whip the butter for 1 minute on high speed, then scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Add the granulated sugar and beat on high speed for 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl again. Add the vanilla extract. While mixing at medium-low speed, add the eggs one at a time. Scrape down the edges of the bowl midway through.
- Combine the flour, baking powder, and sea salt in a separate bowl. With the mixer on low speed, add half the flour mixture. When it’s mostly incorporated, add half the milk. Add the remainder of the dry and wet ingredients, scraping down the sides of the bowl between additions. Stop mixing as soon as you have a smooth batter.
- Pour the batter into prepared tin and bake until the middle of the cake feels springy when you gently press your finger against it, 45-55 minutes. Set the cake aside to cool completely before frosting (once cooled, I put ours in the freezer so it was easier to frost).
- To make the frosting: pour the cream, vanilla, sugar into a large mixing bowl of a stand mixer and whisk on high speed until soft peaks form, about 2 minutes.
- To assemble the cake once cooled, level the cake with a serrated knife. Cut each piece, as directed below and position cake pieces into the shape of a 4.
- Gently dollop frosting on top of cake and spread a thin layer on top and down the sides of the cake until smooth. Decorate cake, put on cake plate, take pictures and enjoy!