Week #31 – Threadless Challenge Attempt 2

This cake was the trifecta of cake decorating for me. I wanted to make a sculpted cake (specifically a dog), I wanted to make a mustache cake and I wanted to make a hipster cake. Bam! All three.

The design is called “Boston Intellectual” and you can buy a cardigan with this lovely fellow embroidered into it here.

The hardest part of this cake was definitely the glasses and the mustache. Getting them to defy gravity was very hard. What I discovered is that the thinner I made the gum paste, the better off I’d be. Even though it could break easier, the weight wouldn’t pull it off the cake. So I used my pasta roller to get the gum paste to a nice, thin consistency.

I loved making this cake. It was such a fun design and fairly straightforward to execute. I made the head out of 2 round cakes, one 8 inch and one 6 inch. I made the ears out of rice cereal treats on toothpicks and the glasses and mustache is gum paste. All other details are fondant. I put plastic drinking straws down the center so the cake could hold it’s own weight.

The cake is vanilla butter cake topped with blue vanilla icing.  I had some blue icing left over from another cake. Waste not want not.

I have a ton more pictures but I will put them up on my flickr page.

This is the cake I decided to actually submit to the contest.  You can see my entry here.

UPDATE:

I brought the cake into my office for my coworkers to enjoy.  They had a lot of fun with the cake.

Week #30 – Chocolate madness!

My friends Jenny and Ryan wanted a birthday cake for their joint birthday celebration. The problem? They don’t really like icing, specifically buttercream.  So what I decided to do was make a white chocolate ganache frosting that really spread like buttercream.  They also love purple so I went ahead and air brushed the cake blue and purple to get this pretty hand painted look. Because it’s damn near impossible to get the icing completely smooth, I  kept it lose to give it a more rough look.  I actually like how that turned out.

I finished it off with 2 gumpaste roses, one that I air brushed purple.

The cake inside was vanilla butter cake with a raspberry jam.  I didn’t try it but they told me it was delicious!

Week #11 Salted Caramel Cake

Sorry for the delay – I’ve been in a magical land called Austin at a conference where nerds come to get drunk and get free stuff. I went to Austin on a bus called the Startup Bus where 300 people from 11 cities get on 11 buses and create 60 startups in 72 hours.

My bus peeps had a little reunion party on Friday so I decided to make a salted caramel cake for the party.  That cake fell apart before I could photograph it but it tasted really good. So using the left over cake and frosting I created this mini cake which is more like a pasty but I’m going to allow it because it’s my blog and I said so.

The cake is a slight variation on my classic butter cake recipe.  It’s a bit less sweet which is good since the frosting is pretty sweet.  I filled each layer with salted caramel buttercream which is similar to standard Italian buttercream except I cooked the sugar a little longer so it would caramelize.  I also swapped some of the water with rum.  This way it tastes delicious and gets you hammered. I topped the cake with a homemade caramel flower (which kinda fell) and some sea salt.

I had a little bit of cake left over from the big cake so I used a 3 inch cutter to cut mini layers of cake.  I decided to leave the outside of the cake “naked” to give it a nice natural look. So now this is a cake that’s bigger than a cupcake and smaller than a real cake :)

Week #3 – Axel “Rose” Cake

Today is my friend Axel’s birthday.  Tomorrow also happens to be his engagement party! So I figured this was a perfect opportunity to make him a cake to celebrate both events.

I had been wanting to try my hand at this cake that I saw on i am baker. It was actually pretty easy and the results are quite lovely.  I didn’t have the big piping tip that she used (she uses a 1M and I used an 825) so mine are more like tea roses but I think they look great.

I learned to make these roses by watching youtube videos like this one:

Originally I had all white roses directly over the brown buttercream crumb coat but you could see the brown through the roses.  So I removed them and lightly did a second coat of white icing and then piped the roses over the whole cake.  I also thought I might want to do a single red rose on the top of the cake but it looked sloppy.  I put the whole cake in the fridge and when it had firmed up, I scrapped off the red rose and piped another white rose in it’s place.  Reminder to self: don’t try to get too fancy. Simple is better.

The cake is a butter red velvet cake with 2 layers of Amaretto and coffee buttercream in between layers. It’s covered with white Italian buttercream. I also used some amaretto on the cake to keep it moist and delicious!

I topped the cake with this adorable banner that I lovingly made out of an old catalogue and used scraps from the envelope of their “Save The Date” card to give it a little more interest and make it  look less like a wedding cake. I used more scraps to decorate the cake board.  I think it has that lovely vintage DIY look.

UPDATE:

Axel just sent me a pic of him cutting into the cake.  Guess he couldn’t wait to eat it :)

They can’t all be winners…

so far this weekend I have baked the same damn cake three times! For some reason I can’t get it right! What’s nuts is that I have made this same recipe many times. Maybe it’s the added pressure of having the internets watching me while I bake.

Oh well – they can’t all be winners.