From Cake Lab

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Marvel Comics Birthday Cake

This cake is another example of how important it is to invest in sweet decorating tools. First off the airbrush, something I've been using for over a year now. It allowed me to cover both tiers in white fondant, saving either time (kneading color into it SUX) or money (you can't get that deep red unless it's store bought). It allowed me to give the blue a little bit of texture for the sky, the only downside is that color flies everywhere!
My newest tool is my printer that produces edible images. I wasn't 100% sure how these guys would turn out but they crisp and vibrant. I cut the images out of the paper and attached them to gum paste with some piping gel. Then I glued candy sticks to them with some melted chocolate. Easy enough to use but you definitely have to handle those images before they dry out and become prone to damage.
Characters such as these would easily take 2-3 hours at least to sculpt out of edible materials. Sure it would be fun, but that equates to 10-15 hours on JUST figures, forget about the baking, icing, carving, and all the other decorating details that take hours. Obviously it is not really feasible or cost effective, so the edible printer is a great alternative and I am very happy for the purchase. So many ideas on how to use it next!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Peacock Themed Birthday Cake

Time for my mom's birthday cake! She's the lucky one in the family who always happens to be around me for her special day, and that means she get a special cake every year.
This year I decided to go with a peacock theme because we live on peacock hill rd, we used to have pet peacocks in Thailand, and whenever we were in a zoo my mom was guaranteed to imitate the peacock mating calls. Plus it would make for a beautifully colorful cake.
Normally I'm all for keeping the cake as edible as possible, but after my initial design I decided I wanted to include a real peacock feather in the cake (well real silk...real bird would be icky). I actually was not able to find a single peacock feather for sale, just some type of floral arrangement that had a couple feathers in it. I decided to buy it and cut off the feather I needed.
As the cake was being made, I wondered how it would look if I just stuck the whole arrangement in the top. I tried it and it actually looked pretty nice, but a little too big for this cake. I decided to cut off the feathers and place them in different locations...worked out perfectly!

My mom's 49th birthday cake was my third real decorated cake. Not exactly something to rave about...but it's awesome looking back to see the progress I made between '09-'10, and then '10-'11. I know I've come a long ways and I have no plans to remain stagnant. I can't wait to see the types of cakes I'll be creating three, five or even ten years down the line.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

LEGO Soldier Cake

I've made a few vertically daring cakes in the past year, but when I heard about a standing LEGO character I was definitely worried. All of my tall cakes have been pretty equal in terms of width and depth, but the LEGO man is much wider than he is deep. I really wasn't sure if this was something I would be able to pull off.
To increase the cakes survival during delivery, I decided to make the cake deeper than I would if I were to make it to scale. Generally I like to keep the cakes as close to scale as possible, but I feel if I did on this one it would have resulted in a unstable cake. I don't think the increased depth distracts from the look of the cake.
I also kept the head removable so it could be transported in a box separately. Arms were maded of rice cereal treats with fondant and gumpaste accents. Have to say these type of cakes sure do stress me out, but it's pretty cool to pull it off, and no collapsed cake so far! *fingers crossed*