My youngest daughter requested a Daniel Tiger birthday cake for her 3rd Birthday. She loves the TV show on PBS, Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood. It is the next generation of characters from Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood that I grew up with. I will admit that I even get nostalgic watching it.
I wanted to recreate the neighborhood trolley…
The Daniel Tiger figurines were purchased at Toys R Us. Thought they would be cute to set up next to the trolley cake. After the birthday party, the birthday girl could play with her figures.
A loaf pan turned out to be the perfect shape and size to make a trolley cake. I baked two separate box mixes using Betty Crocker’s yellow cake mix and a devil’s food cake mix. For each loaf cake, I filled the pan about ¾ full and baked them for approximately 45 minutes, until a toothpick came out clean. With the remaining batter, I filled a muffin tin to make a few cupcakes.
Once the cakes cooled, they were stacked one above the other with a Homemade Creamy Blueberry Filling in the middle. (I also filled the cupcakes with this filling – so good!) Using homemade French Vanilla Icing (see recipe below), the cake was iced white around the sides. Reserving a small amount to dye yellow and the remaining red for the roof. I used Twizzlers candy ropes to trim the trolley and piped yellow icing to create the seats. Just like the neighborhood trolley on the TV show!
My daughter was so excited about her cake and kept taking peeks in the fridge. She also enjoyed the tiger plates that I found at the dollar store along with bright-colored mylar balloons. So cute!
Happy Birthday kiddo! Hope this made her day special.
French Vanilla Icing
- ½ cup butter, softened
- ½ cup Crisco shortening
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup milk (plus a little more if needed)
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Using an electric mixer, cream the butter and shortening on high-speed. Gradually add the sugar. In a small pan, heat the milk until scalded (stir constantly to prevent it from burning). Reduce the speed of the mixer and pour a couple of tablespoons of milk into the mixture, scrape the sides of the bowl and increase the speed. Return the pan of milk to the heat again and repeat the process. The key is to melt and remove the grit from the sugar. This takes patience! If the milk is used up, I will add a few more tablespoons of milk to the pan and repeat the process. The icing will be creamy and grit free!