The spring fairies must be visiting my garden! The flowers are blooming and my daughter has been busy building fairy houses in our yard. She just turned 7 and to celebrate, I wanted to make a fairy house cake for her party.
A few years ago, I bought a beautiful story book called Fairy Houses by Tracy Kane. It was about a little girl who went into the forest on an east coast island to build fairy houses made only out of natural things. My daughter enjoys the idea so, that we still go on walks to collect sticks, bark, rocks and even seashells on vacation. You may not collect anything living. She then builds these cute little homes for the fairies, tucked into hidden places in our gardens. I thought it would be very fitting if she had a fairy house cake for her birthday!
The idea was to make the cake look like a tree stump fairy house. It had 4 layers of chocolate cake, two 9″ layers of dark chocolate boxed cake mix and two 9″ layers of german chocolate cake mix. The layers were alternated light and dark to add interest when you cut into it.
The chocolate ganache frosting was very simple to make. I was inspired by a recipe from Ree Drummond (The Pioneer Woman).
Chocolate Ganache Frosting
- 3 cups heavy cream
- 24 ounces bag semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 teaspoons vanilla
Heat the heavy cream until very hot (not boiling) and add the chocolate chips. Stir over heat until completely melted. The mixture will turn smooth deep chocolate color. Remove from heat and pour into an electric mixer bowl. Refrigerate until completely cooled, but do not let harden. After 2 hours, the bottom of the bowl was just slightly warm to the touch. I added the vanilla and started to beat the chocolate using an electric mixer until light and fluffy.
The chocolate ganache frosting filled between each 9″ chocolate cake layer and the sides of the cake. I covered the sides of the cake and then stroked from the bottom up to create the look of bark. The door and windows were a graham cracker, cut with a knife to shape. They were trimmed with a tube of orange decorative cake icing. The vines were piped using a tube of green decorative cake icing. The edible sugar flowers were packaged by Wilton.
To vary the color of the top of the cake, I made a box of butterscotch pudding and spread this over the top of the cake to look like the inner part of a tree. The fairy figurine that adorned the top of the cake was purchased at a local craft store. A piece of wax paper was placed down underneath to separate her from the cake. The fairy figure will make a neat keepsake on my daughter’s bedroom shelf after her party. The springy butterfly party plates napkins matched perfectly!
Happy Birthday! Stop growing so fast!!
This had to be one of my favorite parties! My daughter turned 6 and she invited a few girls for a quaint fairy tea party. The weather really worked out because we held it out in our yard under the pergola (though the backup plan was to have it indoors) and the garden was just starting to bloom. The fairies must have stopped by to open the flowers just in time for this magical afternoon. Don’t forget to make a place setting for the fairies!
The preparations started the night before. My daughter was just ending her Kindergarten school year and has been very excited about writing. She left a note for the fairies by one of the many fairy houses in our backyard to “leave a sign that they were here to visit” and invited them to her party tomorrow. The fairies really did come to visit because when she checked the fairy house first thing in the morning, fairy dust was sprinkled at each fairy house in our yard with a few “gems” or polished glass stones. She sure anticipated her party after school!
I made the headbands for each girl that attended the party using small silk flowers, ribbon and a butterfly and I found the package of headbands at the dollar store.
Her guests were welcomed into the yard by a “Welcome to the Enchanted Fairy Garden” sign and a fairy house.
I made placemats for the girls out of white card stock with their name, butterfly stickers and a fairy quote “Like fairy dust gleams on butterfly wings, little girl dreams are made of magical things”. At the end of the party I put the placemat and menu in their goodie bag so they could bring them home.
The menu for the fairy tea party was as follows:
Flower Power Grilled Cheese
Butterfly Egg Salad Sandwich
Ham & Cheese Snail Pinwheels
Raisin Bread with Cream Cheese and Sliced Apple
Sliced Banana and Nutella Spread on Crackers
Fresh Fruit Fairy Wands
Chocolate Dipped Fairy Berries
Rainbow Petits Fours
Magical Dragonfly Cupcakes
Peach Herbal Tea
I served proper English style tea for the girls using a herbal peach tea. All of the girls were willing to at least try it. I think it is important to try new things and it was ok if they didn’t care for it, we then served pink lemonade.
I thought this menu catered to most kid’s and I avoided peanut butter in case of food allergies. The biggest hit was the butterfly shaped grilled cheese sandwiches. I had the bread cut, buttered and the sandwiches prepared ahead of time. As I prepared the three tiered server, I put them on a hot griddle, flipped them and they were ready to serve.
The fresh fruit fairy wands were made using wooden skewers.
The dragonfly cupcakes really turned out beautiful. I dipped pretzels in melted blue chocolate wafers and pieced them together on wax paper. They perfectly stayed together to adorn the top of the cupcake. The devils food cupcakes were iced with pink cream cheese frosting.
Desserts are served! The petit fours were easily made using frozen pound cake cut into squares and dipped in different melting chocolates. These could be made a couple days in advance and kept in the fridge.
We played two games at the fairy tea party.
The first was an egg hunt in our yard and throughout the garden. The plastic eggs were filled with small items that the girls will use to build fairy houses to take home. Some items included, glass stones, buttons, pinecones, sea shells, etc. The winner had found the most eggs.
The second game was played in between courses. I filled a tray with “tea party” items and covered it with a table cloth. Once I removed the cover, I explained the items to the girls and they had one minute to look things over. I then covered the tray and gave them paper to list out as many items as they could remember. For young writers, they did a great job!
After the girls finished up their dessert, I cleared the table to work on building a take-home fairy house. I found these little odd shaped boxes that I thought would be perfect to decorate. Prior to the party, my daughter and I filled a box with some natural items, clippings from the boxwood bushes, dried pressed flowers, sticks, pinecones and small stones. I purchased a small bag of moss, seashells and glass stones from the dollar store. Just a few paper plates with glue and the girls were ready to decorate their fairy houses. The houses are perfect to be kept in a dry place outside like a covered porch.
It appeared that the girls enjoyed their afternoon together and we were thankful for them coming to our fairy tea party. The goodie bags included a book on Fairy Houses and a fairy book mark – perfectly matching the Fairy Tea Party theme.