October 27, 2012

An Alice in Wonderland Fail

 I had the honour of making a close friends' 30th birthday cake. She requested an "Alice in Wonderland" Rosebush. I was curious about how I would do this, so it was a challenge I wanted to take on.

Needless to say I learned some lessons from this one.

The first thing was baking a LOT of cake. I think this was 7 layers of cake all stacked together. I needed to carve this into a somewhat bushy looking cake, so I froze the layers so it would be easier to carve.

Mistake #1 - 7 layers of cake, iced frozen.... no supports in it. Dummy

Next was the tedious process of piping all of the leaves on it.

Lots and lots of leaves..

Getting there!

Finally a completed Bush.
Mistake #2 - Failing to notice the cake was already leaning to one side

I went to bed that night wanting to wait until morning to attach the flowers to the cake, rather than letting the buttercream moisten up my royal icing flowers. So I hit the sheets and promptly ignored the warning signs..

Mistake #3 - Stupid Stupid Stupid...

This was what I woke up to the next morning...

Hmm... that ain't right.

It was a good thing I have a decent sense of humour and because this was for a friend, and not a client, it was easier to laugh off this horrible monstrosity.

I quickly realized the error in not putting supports in my cake and cursed myself for the rest of the morning. But I still had to fix this as best I could. Using my (clean) hands, I pushed the cake back up into an upright position. This of course meant I had chunks of icing come off the cake and it required a repair job.

Mistake #4 - Stupidly STILL not realizing I should have added supports through the cake at this point. Even a few dowels here would have at least kept it upright... But Noooooooooo..... Im not so S-M-R-T.

Another icing job taken place and the final decorations attached.

This would be the one and only time it looked "sort of straight"

By the time I got to my friend's house, who is only 6 minutes away, it looked like this:


Thankfully I have good friends. She still thought it was the best thing she ever saw, everyone at the party thought it was great and most didnt even notice the horrible leaning it had..(Were they drunk???)
I was able to laugh it off, and put this in my box of fails, which thankfully, is very small. I learned a ton about supporting my cakes by doing this, so at least it wasn't a total fail..

October 16, 2012

A Minnie-rific Birthday

It was my Youngest's second birthday, and she has been crazy for Mickey and Minnie Mouse. Since my Older daughter got a Mickey Themed Birthday for her second fete, I decided to go more with the Minnie route this time.

Since we were doing a birthday party with all of the kids, and then a birthday dinner with family, I decided to do cupcakes for the party, and then a "simple" cake for the dinner.

The cupcakes were incredibly cute. I decided to try making Swiss Meringue Buttercream instead of the standard buttercream. I had heard good things about it, so I wanted to give it a try....

My opinion???


The frosting was WONDERFUL to pipe with, and I would love to make it again, simply to frost a cake with it, but damn... I did not care for the taste. A normal buttercream is about 4 parts sugar to 1 part butter, whereas Swiss Meringue is the opposite. I felt like I was eating a stick of butter. (shudder)
Now I should say I was not alone in my thinking, but there were a few people at the party that actually preferred this icing to the traditional stuff. So I think its one of those things, if you love sweet, stick with the normal buttercream, if you prefer a less sweet icing, give the swiss one a try!

Anyways, I made Vanilla, Chocolate and Strawberry cupcakes, each one decorated to look a bit like Minnie. I thought they were adorable:)

For the cake with the family, I used the same cake flavors, Strawberry, Chocolate and Vanilla. I made a neopolitan style cake, 5 layers, with buttercream and jam in the centers.

Then covered the whole thing up with buttercream and simple decoration..

It was pretty devine:)

Oh, and as a party favor for the kids at the birthday, I made Mickey Mouse Rice Krispies... Huge Hit!

Happy Second Birthday my Baby Girl!