The Birthday Cake Story

From a very long time I had this plan at the back of my mind. To have a very simple family celebration of Pari’s first birthday and to bake a cake for her at home. In the start, I had plans to bake a chocolate cake for her birthday.

This idea kept me peaceful for a while till one fine day, around a month back while browsing for cake ideas I noticed the importance of every birthday cake to be beautiful besides being delightfully tasty. Beauty for a cake would mean going for that extra mile of icing it gorgeously and most importantly artistically.

Being artistic is one trait I completely lack. When it comes to icing in today’s times, I am aware of the countless cake decorations that are readily available in the market. While I was abroad, getting hold of all the fancy ingredients for a flawless ganache with awe-inspiring decorations (delicate roses, stars made of royal icing and many others) along with piping bags with nozzles of a variety of shapes meant just a visit to the local grocery store.

But, my life in India is different. I searched every nook and corner of the small city I live in, just to end up learning that the only cake decorations (ready-made) I could get hold of were very small silver-colored edible balls. Nothing in color. Not even the very basic colored sprinkles.

Now that put me in a real fix. As the big day was nearing, everybody who knows me and my love for home-made food has been constantly asking, which cake had I planned for Pari’s birthday? This triggered the need to look for cake ideas that were easy (for someone who lacked icing skills) and yet pleasant in appearance to suit the bill of being the cake of a little girl’s first birthday.

Many wonderful suggestions from the readers of this blog helped me get valuable links to some of the finest cake recipes. The only concern that still ticked  in my mind like a time bomb clock, was, what to do for the cake icing?

As Pari’s birthday drew closer, I thought of going for a tasty, moist cake without icing. That would have possibly solved all my problems except one. I have never seen a child’s birthday cake without an icing. I wasn’t ready to be the first one to do that either.

My mum wasn’t of any help either, for each time I tried to seek help from her, she’ll go by, let’s get the cake from the local bakery. That would beat the very point of all this hard-work, that I wanted to bake the cake myself.

After browsing endlessly, making notes (yes, I make notes before trying new recipes) and even experimenting with a few flavors, I had pinned my hopes on going for a Chocolate Marble cake. Just two days before Pari’s birthday I woke up with a feeling that a cake without icing wasn’t what I wanted to go for.

So I decided on something bright that’ll support the theme of being a bright and chirpy little girl’s birthday cake. I again began to shortlist my ideas. The first was going for a chocolate cake with a plain vanilla icing to give bright contrast. The next being a basic banana cake (Pari absolutely loves bananas) with a simple frosting.

The problem of cake decoration was endlessly persisting for a flat white icing (irrespective of how tasty it was) didn’t hit the right spot in my mind to qualify for what I was looking for. I wanted something that’ll light up Pari’s face, that would make her pounce on it with joy for she usually doesn’t like eating sweets beyond the first bite.

After all this confusion, planning and searching for cake recipes the cake I finally made for Pari’s birthday looked something like this.

Pari’s First Birthday Cake

To know which cake it is and what all secrets it holds inside, please read my cake recipe post. Though I’d love to add a spoiler that Pari absolutely loved the cake from the time it came out of the oven as all the while she was seated beside my working bench. She not only loved the look but also was the one who ate the biggest slice.

The song on my mind: Karwatein badlalte rahe ~ Aapki Kasam

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36 thoughts on “The Birthday Cake Story

  1. Quite a story behind the 1st B’day cake :) :)
    It is really lovely…. and you know why? More than anything it is filled with loads and loads of love :)
    Thank you for sharing this special cake with us(virtually) :)
    Waiting for the recipe :)

  2. Yay, your cake brings back fond memories… my mum always used smarties as a cake decoration. And you used the silver balls too, haha! The best compliment would be Pari eating an entire slice, I’m sure.

    • She literally attacked it the minute we cut it for she had been trying to reach for the gems from the time she had seen me decorate them on the cake ;)

  3. Gosh! you girl deserve an award!!! I didnt even buy cake for R’s first birthday *Hangs head in shame*

    It looks so totally gorgeous…drooling and more drooling

    @Pari: You are VERY VERY VERY lucky okie babes?

  4. I am a fussy cake eater :) , this one looks yummy and the little gems on top they are my favorite toooo..

    I bet pari loved it all….and hope u froze a piece for me he he he he…

    • You won the bet Bikram, Pari too attacked the Gems the minute she was in proximity of the cake :D
      It’s very easy to make Bikram, I’ll make fresh for you :D

  5. Absolutely yumm and a lovely cake for Pari’s first B’day.. More than the cake it is the feeling and the thought that goes behind that,, When pari wud start reading all ur blogs, she would absolutely fall in love with you all over again,, Oh did I become a little emotional here?? May be I am missing my mom these days a lot.. Mom’s are great ME.. And I am sure you wud know it when Pari tells u this… :) My Belated and very very hearty wishes to Pari on her First B’day…

  6. Lovely story behind the cake, and lovely cake too! :) Glad to know Pari loved the cake that her momma chose and baked with so much love and care. :)

    BTW who says you are lacking in artistic skills? If that cake is anything to go by, you are super-duper talented. Really.

  7. Pingback: Summer Spring Birthday Cake « The Era I lived in

  8. Hmm, now you’ve got me thinking… my daughter is not even 6 months old yet, but I want to bake her first birthday cake too!

    I used to love decorating cakes when I was a teenager (in the US). I tried SOOOO many different icing recipes. I wish I still knew which were the best and worst, so that I could give you some advice. But I stopped making those kinds of cakes, since I find them way too sweet.

    You can make your own decorating bag by using a plastic bag. Just cut off one corner to make a very small hole (bigger for thicker piping) then fill the bag with icing, and squeeze! I used to do this all the time, becuase then you don’t have to wash the bag when you are done. If you have metal piping tips then you can put one of those in, and it will give you cleaner lines. But you don’t really need them! Maybe I will write a post about how to do this some day. You have lots of time before Pari’s second birthday ;)

    • I have never been confident with the piping bag and so didn’t experiment on Pari’s special day cake. Though I must admit I did consider the option of the plastic bag icing cone, but didn’t dare try it.
      Never mind, I’ll practice in the year ahead for her second birthday, just like you suggested :D :D

      Looking forward to hearing more for you and have tons of fun with you little darling :D

  9. Pingback: Sixteen « The Era I lived in

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