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The Dos and Don’ts When Baking a Surprise Birthday Cake For Your Mum’s Best Friend

My mum forgot her best friend’s birthday. Now, stop with the judgment – we’ve all been there. I for one can totally relate since this has happened to me on numerous occasions…

Consequently, I found myself power walking to the shop clutching an old restaurant receipt with a haphazard list on the back, in an attempt to soften the whole forgetting birthday situ. Mum and Best Friend were due home in a few hours, so I hurried back from the shop armed with double cream and luxury strawberry jam. Luckily essential baking ingredients are always readily available in our pantry, despite the fact that we rarely bake. I then proceeded to whip out the Kenwood Kitchen Aid and cover my #chicvibesonly outfit with an apron, which happened to be adorned with little dogs. In hindsight, I feel I can offer some crucial advice when baking a surprise birthday cake for your mum’s best friend, so here goes:


  • Go for a classic flavour – you can’t go wrong with a Victoria Sandwich, or so I thought…
  • Always use your Nana’s recipe. (Mary Berry will do)
  • Surprise your mums best friend when she forgets their birthday. Even if they’re on a diet. Everyone will still eat and appreciate.
  • Whip the cream with a small amount of icing sugar to give it sufficient hold.
  • Add fresh strawberries to the center filling – it makes all the difference to the flavor.
  • Put it straight in the fridge and only fill once throughly chilled… See below reason.


  • Don’t forget your best friends birthday.
  • Don’t bake a surprise birthday cake for your mum’s best friend whilst it’s 26 degrees outside. The cake and filling will quickly droop into jammy mess.
  • Don’t over fill. See above reason.
  • Don’t worry if the cake smells like eggs when it comes out the oven – unnecessary panic leads to over compensation when filling. See above reason.
  • Don’t believe advice online that claims icing sugar will give whipped cream hold.


So, I made a surprise birthday cake for my mum’s best friend and overfilled it in a hot kitchen thus, it sank into a strawberries and cream slush. It was an overflowing gooey mess and as a result, resembled a Year 3 art project. However, it tasted delicious and luckily my mum’s best friend is a gem and loved it regardless. It wasn’t quite Fortnums cake trolley status, but it was damn good! 





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