From Cake Lab

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Scooby Doo Cake

It is a huge relief to know that this cake made it safely to its destination without self destructing. Not only was this my most challenging cake to date, but the timing wasn't the best as I had a busy work week and my car was giving me troubles and had to be serviced.
Scooby was for a 6 year old boy's birthday, and when his mother first contacted me to do his cake, we were thinking of doing a Scooby Doo themed tiered birthday cake. After she checked out some of my previous 3D cakes, she decided to do a 3D Scooby, and I thank her for taking the risk! Although now that I think about it, it was my idea to do Scooby in a sitting position...I'm not really sure why I decided to up the difficulty factor on myself!
The entire process was just completely nerve wracking. Even as the cake started to take form, I knew I couldn't relax until the cake was placed on the party table. Every time I left the cake, I expected to walk in on a pile of crumbs. I even contemplated baking some extra cakes so I could whip up a tiered cake last minute if I really had to. Every baker seems to have one horrible caketastrophe, and I almost expected this to be mine. Fortunately, not the case!

This Scooby cake is made of twelve 6" round vanilla rainbow cakes - you can see some progress photos posted on Facebook.
Covering Scooby in fondant was no easy task. The piece had to be so big, and covering such a tall cake meant there was a lot of excess that needed to be cut off. I was able to make the front look great, but after contouring the fondant to his limbs, the back was already staring to get really dry. Definitely need more than two hands to get a job like that done in the future.
The feature I had the most difficult time with was the teeth. I must have tried at least 10 versions, in various positions, shapes, and sizes. It was really difficult trying to convert the 2D image into a 3D cake...I just didn't know what to do with those pearly whites! In the end, I spent so much effort trying to get the teeth right, that I didn't even think to try no teeth at all. I guess that's what happens when you spend too much time on a project.

Even with the teeth, Scooby is one of my favorite cakes and I can't wait to make another 3D creation.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Pink/Green 50th Birthday Cake

Last week's cake presented me with a bit of a challenge - a cake for a 50th birthday with nothing really specific except the colors pink, green, and the letter 'J'. Since the majority of my cakes are for children, it wasn't so easy coming up with the design.
I started off the bottom tier with stripes and dots, something that looks good on every cake. But after finishing it, I realized it looked too juvenile, especially with the colors. When I got to work on the top tier, I wondered if my Cricut Cake machine could come in handy. I haven't had a ton of experience working with it, and while it can produce some nice decorations, it's still a lot of work. Not to mention I had only ever cut out gumpaste with the machine, which would quickly dry out after continued uses. This time I found some tips online for cutting with fondant, and the one I found to be most useful is to freeze the fondant after it has been rolled out and pressed into the mat. It worked out better than I expected, and I then wanted the bottom tier to tie into the top. Unfortunately it's hard to remove decorations once they are added without damaging the cake, so I could only switch it up so much.
In the end I would say it wasn't my most cohesive design, but I still think it is pretty nice cake.