I saw many Disney princess cakes that were all lovely, but was scared to start with something so complicated.
In the end, this Barbie doll cake was very easy to make and I would recommend it to anybody. It is an easy start in the doll cake category.
If you need to make a Disney princess cake, then I would recommend getting the doll in question. It will just look better if you get a Cinderella doll and make the corresponding dress to it then if you would use the doll provided with the Wilton doll cake kit.
I also think that it is easier to make a complicated dress (with many folds) out of colored fondant then to make it from buttercream. If you also value the taste of the cake, then making your own fondant is an option. You can try out my fondant recipe that is really easy to follow and totally makeable.
My daughter always wanted a Barbie doll cake so I had to buy the Wilton doll cake set. I read of people baking the doll skirt in a kitchen aid mixing bowl, but since I don't have a Kitchen aid, I had to buy the set.
Whatever way you choose to bake the doll cake, you should always make sure to fat the form very well. Wilton recommends using shortening, not butter or oil. I followed their instructions and had no problems with taking the cake out of the pan. You just have to make sure to smear the fat everywhere and then evenly spread the flour. Once your cake is baked then all you need to do is to decorate.
How to decorate a princess birthday cake:
Wilton suggests placing the cake on the middle rack for the entire baking time, but you will need to cover the cake after 40 minutes of baking with aluminum foil. The cake is high and it might burn on the top if you don't use the aluminum foil.
I would not place the cake lower in the oven since then the bottom might burn, making it difficult to unmold. I baked the cake for 20 more minutes and took it out once the cake tester came out clean.
Using royal icing colored with a dash of red food coloring, I made 120 flowers using tip -#16 and 120 flowers using tip #225. I also made one recipe of buttercream icing and colored it with red currant jelly.
I cooked 1/2 cup of the jelly and strained it through a strainer to make sure that no seeds got into the icing. I then, added the jelly to the ready buttercream and ended up with slightly tangy icing. Of course, if you don't have red currant jelly, you could use cranberry jelly or just plain food coloring.
Before assembling the cake, I moistened it with a syrup made of red currant juice and sugar. If you don't have red currant juice, you can just make a syrup out of water and sugar. The icing came out as pale pink. I saved a little to make the dots on the dress, and colored the rest to get a more intensive color using Wilton food coloring.
I strongly recommend to bake the cake a day before you plan to decorate. This will give you enough time for the cake to cool off and for the syrup to sink in. I was surprised how long it took for the cake to cool off. I guess it was the cone shape that made the difference.
Anyway, if you bake the cake a day ahead, you will not have any problems. Once the cake has cooled off, you are ready to decorate. Another suggestion that I have is to arrange the doll's hair before you stick her it into the cake. That may take some time, so you can also do this ahead of time.
OK, so you have your cake cooled off, moist, buttercream is ready to use, doll is made up, you are ready. I would start with covering the princess birthday cake with one thin coat of icing to make sure all the crumbs are gone, and then cover it again with a thicker layer.
Use the rest of the icing to cover the doll and make the top of the dress. Attach the small flowers (tip 16) to the doll torso and to make the straps of the dress. Place the small flowers (tip 16) onto the dress like in the picture and the bigger flowers (tip 225) at the bottom making the garland. Pipe out small stars (tip 13) with the rest of the icing all around the Barbie doll cake.
I strongly recommend investing in a turntable. This will simplify your decorating work, since you won't have to turn the cake using both hands. It really is worth the money, which by the way, it is not much. I bought mine for the equivalent of 15 dollars. It is made of glass and pretty enough to serve the cake directly on it.
I really hope that mine princess cake ideas give you some kind of guidance while making this great Barbie doll cake. Making a princess birthday cake requires some patience and time, but this one in the end was not as involved as some other birthday cakes. Next time your daughter or a niece has a birthday, try making this princess birthday cake for her!
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