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Let them eat cake

The Australian Women's Weekly Children's Birthday Cakes Cookbook is making a comeback.


Let them eat cake

Sami Muirhead loves a good birthday party and it wouldn’t be complete without an outrageously decadent cake from a famous cookbook.

I have ordered something online (again) that is potentially a family game-changer. It could make me Mum Of The Year.

I may go from zero status to hero status when it comes to cooking for my tribe of beautiful children.

I have ordered The Australian Women’s Weekly Children’s Birthday Cake Book. Well played, me!

The bible has recently been republished in its original glory, complete with the choo-choo train on the cover. most popular of all the styles.

I am grateful this little gem from our childhood is back in our lives. The cake cookbook was first released in 1980 and today it sits in one million households around the country.

We all have primal memories of what cake we had – or did not have – for our birthdays.

My best friend Nicola had the Dolly Varden cake. Oh, how I coveted that cake. Nicola also had a Cabbage Patch kid and the entire Smurf collection.

When I was about seven, everyone seemed to have the Old Lady In A Shoe cake. And of course, who could forget the beautiful butterfly or the Humpty Dumpty cake?

Those days were simpler when it came to parties. We had cordial. We played red rover in our undies under the sprinkler and we had cake.

And the cakes were not deconstructed, they were not croquembouche, they were not six tiers with lime infused macaroons and flowers on each level.

They were big and bold and full of colour and they looked homemade.

But spoilt brat me never had the cake I truly wanted.

My mum was too busy raising three children by herself. I do remember one year, Mum made me the Hickory Dickory Dock cake.

I was so excited. We talked about it for weeks. But Mumsy could not find a chocolate lolly mouse to put on the cake, so she made one out of our prunes.

Can you imagine my embarrassment and disappointment when I saw the rodent sitting on my cake made of gross prunes?

But now I have the chance to relive my childhood and make all the classics for my kids.

My kids’ parties have been well-documented for how ridiculous they are.

When my daughter turned one, I ordered 40 inflatable flamingos for the pool and we had a sea of pink flamingo feathers over the entire backyard.

I have learned along the way. Life has become busier and these days, I love a good outsource.

My middle boy is turning five and we are invading the Kawana Aquatic Centre to celebrate.

I do not have to clean my house or worry about the toilet seat being left down.

He wants a shark and scuba diving cake. And if the cake goes pear-shaped (there is a pretty good chance it will), well we can say it’s an exploding blue volcano.

The kids will not actually care as long as there are heaps of cream and lollies and not a single prune.


Sami Muirhead is a radio announcer, blogger and commentator. For more from Sami tune into Mix FM.

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