Baking a Birthday Cake – By the Numbers

Kim Joy’s Lemon cake recipe from her book
The Spruce Eats Fluffy Homemade Vanilla Cake recipe

Ingredients for both cakes, Italian buttercream frosting (Kim Joy recipe), ruby chocolate ganache drips, and pink fondant donut topping: $63.75
– 13 sticks of Unsalted butter ($9.75)
– 1 box of caster baking sugar ($5.79)
– Self-Rising Flour ($4.49)
– All-Purpose White Flour ($2.49)
– Cream of tartar from our spice cabinet
– Baking Powder from our spice cabinet
– 15 large eggs ($3.49)
– 6 lemons ($4.99)
– 2 cartons of fresh raspberries ($10.98)
– Heavy cream from our fridge supplies
– Vanilla extract from our spice cabinet
– 4.4oz Pink fondant ($3.19)
– Gel-Based food color 12-count pack ($13)
– Almost 2 bars of ruby chocolate ($5.58)

Baking Supplies (not consumable) bought specially for this cake project: $29.47
– 7″ ring mold pan from Fat Daddio’s ($13.49)
– 7″ Round cheesecake pan from Fat Daddio’s ($11.99)
-11 Piece round cookie cutter set doughnut cutters ($3.99)

New Techniques that I’ve never done before/Lessons learned:

  1. Making my own cake board using cardboard and tin foil
  2. Making buttercream that isn’t just powdered sugar icing
  3. Fixing the buttercream when it isn’t the correct texture
  4. Using a Kitchen-Aid mixer
  5. Weighing and Coloring the batter for even layers
  6. Putting parchment paper in the baking pan after greasing the pan (and cutting out the circle to fit the pan)
  7. Baking each layer separately because I only had one 9″ pan
  8. Making a chocolate ganache
  9. Using Ruby Chocolate
  10. Creating ganache drips using a spoon and ganache at the correct temperature
  11. Stacking the layers in a cake
  12. Crumb coating a cake
  13. Frosting a cake with a spatula and my grandparent’s turntable
  14. Putting a second tier on top of a 5-layer cake bottom tier
  15. Working with fondant
  16. Cutting a cake that is 9.5″ tall and not dropping the top tier onto the floor when plating the slice

The evolution of my first cake-from-scratch:

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