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Cake submitted by Tracy T. from Oak Ridge, TN
My son Jonas loves the Hungry Little Caterpillar by Eric Carle and Baby Einstein. So for his second birthday we did a caterpillar party.
To make the cakes, I used a simple yellow cake recipe for one, a simple chocolate cake recipe for the other. I used a 6-mini loaf pan.
I filled the sections half full of batter. Then baked according to baking cupcake instructions on the recipe, beginning to test them about 5 minutes prior to the completed cooking time (when a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean).
I removed the cakes from the pans, and let them cool completely. Once cooled, I put the cakes into the freezer for an hour. (I find it is easier to frost when the cakes are chilled.)
I did use store-bought frosting (3 cans) and made the colors with food coloring and decorating gel. (You will need to make about 1/2 cup of each color: yellow, green, red, purple, and blue.
I bought a cake board from the local cake decorating store. Covered it with parchment paper taping to the underside.
When it was time to position the cakes and frost, I carefully sliced a small layer off the tops of both the rounds and the mini loafs so they would be flat against the cake board (easier to frost that way).
I positioned the cake sections one at a time, frosting them before I positioned the next so they wouldn't mix colors. The positioning is not truly important. Just take a look at the picture and see if you can position the sections to look like a caterpillar wiggling/walking.
Frosted following the color model of the Baby Einstein caterpillar from face to tail: yellow, blue, purple, red, green, yellow.
Then I stuck chocolate gold coins on toothpicks for the wheels. Used red jelly beans on toothpicks for the antennae, chocolate and pink ones for the face, and yellow ones (on a toothpick) for the little tail.
Don't forget to remove the toothpicks before serving, especially with toddlers.
To frost the Hungry Little Caterpillar, I used red frosting for the face, green and a light blue mix on parts of the sections for the body (following the model in the story).
Again, chocolate jelly beans on toothpicks were used for the feet, red ones on toothpicks for the antennae, and green ones for the face.
My son loved them, especially after digging in the mud on the playground where he had his birthday party! Each child got a small slice of a section.