Top the cake with 21 candles: A traditional cake can be topped with 21 candles or two candles in the shape of a 2 and a 1. This leaves plenty of room and emphasizes the wonderful flavor the birthday celebrant looks forward to all year. Fill between layers with a favorite flavor like strawberry. Blowing out 21 lit candles is a whole new experience and can be fun to watch. After that, even a 21 year old, realizes they’re getting old.
Make the cake in the shape of the numbers for 2 and 1: Everyone loves cakes made in special shapes. Large numerals made of cake really say it. Years later, it will be easy to tell what birthday it was from the photos. Since a great deal of the cake will be cut away to make the numbers, you should use a full sheet pan or two half sheet pans. Make sure you have plenty of frosting ready because the cut sides of the numerals will gobble it up like crazy.
Make the cake in the shape of wine bottles or a beer mug: 21 is the legal age for drinking. I don’t promote drinking, but a cake in the shape of a wine bottle or beer mug can be fun for the right person. The shape may have to be oversized to have enough to serve party guests. The label on the wine bottle provides an opportunity for some humor. You can use the year of birth as the vintage and a play on the birthday celebrant’s name as the name for the wine. Some wine glasses with ribbons can be set nearby to share a toast. Serve sparkling cider to those under 21 at the party.
Make the cake in the shape of a car: Driving is important to a 21-year old. A cake in the shape of his or her favorite car is a great way to celebrate. Use at least two layers, one for the body of the car and a smaller one for the passenger compartment. Tires are easy if you use dark chocolate cookies frosted and pressed on the side of the car (cake) body. Silver or black are very difficult frosting colors for the car body. Use wild colors like hot pink or lime green for the car body frosting and have fun. The glass in the windows can be done with light blue frosting and a few white highlights to indicate reflections. Very little detail is needed to make it look like a car once you have the basic shape and wheels. Soon your 21 year old will be driving away with a tasty piece of cake. Have fun!