A homemade birthday cake is treat that will be remembered for the love and effort you put in. This easy birthday cake recipe requires less effort than most, but still looks fun and impressive.
For the cake
- 225g/8oz unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
- 225g/8oz caster sugar
- 4 free-range eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 225g/8oz self-raising flour
For the buttercream
For the decoration
- assorted biscuits, meringues, sweets, sprinkles and chocolates
Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Using a piece of kitchen paper, grease 2 x 20cm/8in round cake tins with butter. Line the bottom of the tins with a circle of baking paper.
In a large bowl, cream together the butter and sugar using an electric mixer until the mixture is pale and fluffy.
Beat in the eggs one at a time, mixing until the egg is completely incorporated into the batter before adding the next. Add a tablespoon of flour if the mixture curdles. Mix in the vanilla extract.
Fold in the flour using a large metal spoon until no traces of flour are visible. Spoon the mixture into the prepared cake tins, spreading evenly with a spatula. Make a slight dip in the centre with the tip of the spatula if you don't want the cake to be domed in the middle.
Bake for 25 minutes, or until the cakes spring back when the centre is pressed gently with a finger.
Remove from the oven and take the cakes out of the tins after about 10 minutes. Place the cakes on a wire rack to cool completely.
To make the buttercream icing, sift half the icing sugar into a bowl with the softened butter and beat until light and fluffy. Beat in the remaining icing sugar then beat in the vanilla extract and the milk.
Place one of the cakes upside down onto a cake board or stand. Using a palette knife or spatula, spread half the icing onto the bottom layer of the cake, then place the second layer on top. Spread the remaining icing on the top of the cake, creating a swirly pattern. Decorate with your choice of sprinkles, biscuits, sweets and chocolates.