Baker’s Playdough

Thing 3 turns 4 next Monday and I’ve been envisioning a masterpiece cake — and it required learning to deal with fondant, which for reasons I don’t understand now seemed a little intimidating. I thought it would be . . . stiffer . . . and trickier somehow. Then Glenna started a series on the birthday cakes she is making with fondant so I felt a bit more confident about tackling it.

It’s *playdough* with a different smell! 😀  (hehehe!)

But now my little Thing 3 wants an elephant cake . . . so I don’t need to use fondant. I still could, I guess, but I don’t like the taste of fondant at all (and it’s more expensive) so it seems like any time regular old buttercream/cream cheese frosting would work, I’d prefer to use that. But I had some fondant and I wanted to play with my new toys! Fortunately, one of the Husband’s co-workers is turning 40 today, so I had a reason to use it.

birthday-cake.jpg

I have *never* been able to get the sides & tops of my cakes as smooth as I would like (so don’t look too closely at that part) and last night, hours after a brief stop in Michael’s for the cookie cutters, I realized why, at least in part. I could really use a spatula that is longer than 3 inches so I’m not forever going back and forth to smooth things but could just make large sweeping motions. Actually, in my brief stop in the cake decorating section I saw about $50 worth of tools that would make cake decorating *sooooo* much easier. I don’t make cakes all *that* often, but I may pick up a few things here and there over the next year so it’s not so frustrating when I do make a cake.

flowers.jpg

This has five layers of cake and two different fillings so that it is layered as such: white cake, dark chocolate ganache, double chocolate cake, blackberry whipping cream, white cake, blackberry whipping cream, double chocolate cake, dark chocolate ganache, and white cake. I put on a crumb coat with thin cream cheese buttercream frosting then spread on the peachy-pink buttercream layer, piped on the borders, and put the dried fondant flowers on with a dot of buttercream in the centers.  I’d love to see it sliced to see if it looks as good as I had hoped!

It was a fun experiment, fun to learn something new, and I’ll definitely use it again.

Happy Birthday, Lori!

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5 Responses

  1. Thanks so much!!!! Anytime you want to experiment, just send to work with the husband!, we would be glad to test it out! It looks too pretty to eat. I’ll take a picture of the inside for you.

  2. hey, thanks for mentioning me. That was really sweet.
    I love you cake. It’s beautiful! Aren’t those cutters fun? I really like them alot. I have a thing on mine today about using the biggest two of them to create Gerber Daisies.

    You did a great job! And don’t worry about the sides. If it bugs YOU then get the longer spatula and you can even dip it in hot water and go over the cake after you get the icing mostly down and the way you want it. That helps smooth the icing before you decorate. But don’t worry about it. Nobody notices the base frosting. Everyone’s too busy looking at the cute flowers!

  3. How cute!! It think the cake is lovely – I NEVER would have noticed the sides. 🙂

    Happy b-day to Lori!

  4. Lori — Glad you liked it and I hope you had a great day!

    Glenna — I have LOVED each installment in the cake countdown and I’m learning so much about something I have just avoided until now as the arena of masters that I should avoid. It’s good to shed the willful ignorance and try it out! 😉 Thanks for the tip on the hot water/spatula . . . I had read that, probably on your site, recently but at midnght I didn’t want to do something stupid and end up dripping water all over the place and ruining the cake altogether. I’ll try it with the elephant this weekend.

    Kirsten — Thank you! I think it’s just b/c the last few years I’ve been particularly critical of my base frosting that I always inspect other cakes, sometimes thinking, ‘oh, look, that cake isn’t perfectly smooth either’ and other times thinking, ‘wow! how do you get it to look like that w/o fondant?’

    The leftovers came home tonight and I tried it. As I suspected, the dark chocolate completely swamped the delicate flavor of blackberry whipped cream layers. It’s probably better for an all white cake, where the subtlety wouldn’t be so lost.

  5. Please let me know how to make flower.

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