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The Baker's Guide to a Neopian Birthday


by corrina404

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Are you still looking for an ideal way to celebrate Neopets’ 23rd Birthday? Look no further – your answers are here! We’ve brought you our favourite cake recipe so you can spend a wonderful afternoon in the kitchen baking and listening to Neopets soundtracks*!

     *Soundtracks optional – but can we suggest Time Tunnel?! It’s a tune!

     We’ve brought you this plain butter cake recipe as it’s a perfect base to suit all tastes – or mix it up with some fruits or flavours! For those with dietary requirements, please mind the ingredients and use suitable alternatives.

     What You’ll Need:

     Oven (at 350° F or 180° C)

     Baking Mixer

     8” or 20cm Round Cake Pan

     Baking Paper

     Oil (for Pan base)

     Mixing Bowl

     Rubber Spatula

     Oven Mitts

     Cooling Tray

     Ingredients:

     ½ cup Butter

     ½ Caster / Superfine Sugar

     2 Eggs

     1 ¼ cups All-purpose Flour

     1 teaspoon Baking Powder

     ⅓ cup Milk

     Method:

     1. Set oven to required temperature. Brush or spray cake pan with oil and line base with baking paper.

     It’s best to set the oven at least 20 minutes before starting to prepare the cake batter. The oven must be ready and hot when the cake batter goes in. We’re pretty sure this is the first instruction in the best Neopian cookbook ‘Cake Recipes for All Occasions’ too!

     2. Place butter and sugar in a bowl. Cream butter and sugar with the mixer until ingredients are light and fluffy.

     Did you know it wasn’t until Year 4 that Neopians could purchase a Stick of Butter, and had to wait until the next year for a Bag of Sugar! We’re guessing baking wasn’t very popular back then…

     3. Gradually add eggs, continuously beating well until incorporated.

     Yes, we mean Eggs not Neggs! Although we do wonder how it would work out! Make sure you scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed to make sure all the ingredients have a chance to mix together.

     4. Stir in flour and milk, alternating about ⅓ of total amount at a time. Stir gently but thoroughly.

     Lucy the Blue Usul has advised us to make sure you don’t accidentally use Flour Brand Zombie Powder instead of normal Flour like she did during the Great Neopia Bake-Off. Thanks for the warning, Lucy!

     5. Place in cake pan and bake at temperature for 35-40 minutes.

     We think this cooking time is perfect to check back on the Neoboards and play a few games of Pyramids! You will know the cake is baked when the sides shrink slightly from the sides of the pan and a fine skewer inserted into the cake’s centre comes out clean and dry – no goopy mixture sticking to the skewer. Yes, that’s goopy not goople – we hope there’s no mischievous petpets to be found hiding inside your cake!

     6. Remove cooked cake. Sit for 5 minutes in pan, and then take out to continue cooling on tray.

     Oven mitts are essential here! The pan will be hot! Please be careful, and maybe pick up a copy of ‘How to Creatively Stop Kitchen Fires’ if you need a guide.

     You should find the oil and baking paper we used at the start of the recipe should make this step relatively easy without the cake sticking to the pan. That’s a top tip from the Crumpetmonger herself!

     Now you have a beautiful cake, ready for any occasion. For those that want to take this cake to the next level, and truly celebrate the biggest birthday of the year – we have some suggestions!

     Tip One: Star-Shaped Cake

     A Round Cake is fine – but what could be more Neopian than a cake in the shape of a star! We’ve taken our inspiration from the beautiful ‘Neopets 12th Birthday Cake’.

     First, take a sheet of baking paper or paper and outline a star shape. For a Neopian Star you want a 5-tipped star. Don’t worry if it’s a little wonky – the Neopets star is too! Place the paper over the cake and begin cutting the cake around the shape.

     Once you’ve finished cutting, take the excess away (these are a great snack for later!). Now you have a beautiful Neopets-themed cake!

     Tip Two: Buttercream Frosting

     What’s better than cake? A cake with frosting! We’ve got a quick Buttercream recipe to take your cake to the next level.

     Put ½ cup of room temperature unsalted butter in a bowl. Cream butter with a beater until smooth and fluffy. Gradually beat in 2 cups of sifted icing sugar until fully incorporated. Beat in 1 ½ teaspoons of vanilla extract.

     Add 2 tablespoons of milk and beat for another 3 to 4 minutes. For those that want to take it the next step add 3 drops of the food colouring of your choice and beat for 30 minutes. We suggest yellow to go along with the Neopets theme – and works with our inspo ‘Neopets 12th Birthday Cake’!

     Once the batter is mixed, spread the mixture over a cooled cake. Voila!

     Tip Three: Flavoured Cake

     As we hinted before, you can make this cake whatever flavour suits you!

     With our theme, Neopets 12th Birthday Cake is flavoured lemon! If a zesty tang sounds perfect for you, after step 4 of our recipe above, fold in ⅓ cup lemon juice and continue with the recipe.

     Alternatively, if you are a chocolate lover, sift in 2 tablespoons of cocoa with the flour in step 4 of the recipe above. Also add in 2 tablespoons of extra milk and ½ teaspoon of vanilla essence. Chocolate Cake is a classic choice, and a favourite also available at the Bakery in the Neopian Bazaar!

     And that’s it! We hope this recipe has provided you the inspiration to celebrate Neopets’ 23rd Birthday in the tastiest way possible! One final recommendation from us – it’s not a birthday cake without candles! With 23 candles we think numbered candles might be best. Be sure to sing the Birthday song as loudly as possible and have fun!

     Birthday wishes,

     corrina404, preksolanx and theguy2020.

 
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