Dorothy’s Rose Garden Tea Party Cake

Dorothy The Dinosaur Rose Garden Tea Party

I had decided last year that no matter what happens, Little M will get a beautiful cake the first Saturday after her birthday. So this year, like last, I had to order an undecorated cake and decorate at home but I FORGOT :O So husband told me to just bake one. I decided on a simple butter cake.

So here is the recipe with variations in method and technique to produce one of the most moist cake I have ever eaten.

Recipe curtsey of

Ingredients (serves 12)

  • 250g butter, softened
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla essence
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 1/2 cups self-raising flour
  • 2/3 cup milk
  • icing sugar mixture, to serve


  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/160°C fan-forced. Grease and line an 8cm-deep, 19cm (base) square cake pan with baking paper.
  2. Using an electric mixer, cream butter, caster sugar and vanilla in a medium bowl on medium-high speed until light and fluffy.
  3. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating to combine. Add half the flour. Stir to combine. Add half the milk. Stir to combine. Repeat with remaining flour and milk.
  4. Spread mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 1 hour or until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Stand in pan for 10 minutes. Turn out onto a wire rack to cool. Dust with icing sugar. Serve.

Variations and Techniques I used

  1. I used a round spring-form tin, 21cm diameter, 7cm deep and greased with Wilton Cake Release.
  2. I followed some very good tips from The 1997 Joy of Cooking.
    1. Prepare all ingredients before hand so there is no break in between addition of ingredients. The mixture should not be left to rest.
    2. Everything has to be at room temperature. The butter should not be a had slab nor a runny gooey mass.
    3. The eggs are better slightly beaten in individual bowls before adding in.
  3. I left the cake extra 10 – 15 minutes in the oven as it was still slightly raw after the 1 hour but took it out of the pan straight away rather than resting it.
  4. I had a dome-shaped cake so I cut off the top with a cake leveler. I then cut the cake in 2 and put strawberry jam in the middle before putting the second piece back on. I used a New Zealand jam called Anathoth found at my local Coles. It’s a bit pricey but oh so delicious.Inside the Cake


I decided to decorate with marshmallow fondant. It was hard work but the result was beautiful. Marshmallow fondant figurines can be made in advance and kept in airtight containers for a few weeks. We made ours 3 Saturdays before.

Fondant Recipe from Wilton


  • 1 package (16 ounces) white mini marshmallows (use a good quality brand) (453.59g)
  • 2-5 tablespoons water
  • 2 pounds (about 8 cups) sifted confectioners’ sugar (icing sugar 907.18g)
  • 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening


About 2 pounds marshmallow fondant. (907.18g)


1. To make marshmallow fondant, place marshmallows and 2 tablespoons of water in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave 30 seconds on high; stir until mixed well. Continue microwaving 30 seconds more; stir again. Continue until melted (about 2 1/2 minutes).

2. Place 3/4 of the confectioners’ sugar on top of the melted marshmallow mixture. Fold sugar into marshmallow mixture. Flavoring can be added at this point if desired. Place solid vegetable shortening in easily accessed bowl so you can reach into it with fingers as you are working. Grease hands and counter GENEROUSLY; turn marshmallow mixture onto counter. Start kneading like you would dough. Continue kneading, adding additional confectioners’ sugar and re-greasing hands and counter so the fondant doesn’t stick. If the marshmallow fondant is tearing easily, it is too dry; add water (about 1/2 tablespoon at a time) kneading until fondant forms a firm, smooth elastic ball that will stretch without tearing, about 8 minutes.

3. It’s best to allow Marshmallow Fondant to sit, double-wrapped, overnight. Prepare the fondant for storing by coating with a thin layer of solid vegetable shortening, wrap in plastic wrap and then place in resealable bag. Squeeze out as much air as possible. Marshmallow Fondant will keep well in refrigerator for several weeks.

4. When not working with fondant, make sure to keep it covered with plastic wrap or in a bag to prevent it from drying out. When ready to use, knead fondant until smooth. Roll out fondant 1/8 in. thick.

5. To color fondant: If you need to tint the entire batch of fondant, add a little icing color to the melted marshmallow mixture before adding confectioners’ sugar. For smaller amounts of tinted fondant, add icing color to portions of fondant as needed.

My Variations:

  1. I used normal sized Marshmallows, Pascalls I think and the packet had pink and white ones. Half the quantity was white, the other pink. I have a digital machine that weighs in Imperial and Metric.
  2. I needed more than the icing sugar required in the recipe. It is best to sieve the icing sugar so there is no lumps.
  3. I used Copha vegetable shortening.
  4. Do not use liquid food color it will make a watery mess and the colors are not that dark. Gel food colors are best as they don’t thin the mixture and can produce much darker color. The only ones I have been able to find are Wilton ones. Yep I’m in love with the brand.
  5. I took some of the pink and added red color for the roses. I divided the white into 3 and added green to one lot and yellow to another.Prepared Fondants

To make Roses.

We followed this video.

Fondant Roses

To Make Dorothy I just looked at the soft toy I had in front of me. The black edging on the hat and the eyes are done by dipping toothpick in the black gel and drawing on. For the writing, I used thinly rolled out fondant.

UPDATE 11 September 2013

Cake Trails has a very easy tutorial for making teddy bears. If I were to make Dorothy again, I would follow the teddy bear instructions but make the head a bit pointy like Dorothy and also add the tail.