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Beach Theme Cake

January 25, 2017

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This week I made a cute little 6 inch vanilla cake that was all about the beach. It was such a simple and clean cake with a few details that really made you look twice to see how it was put together.

The beach chair on top was started 5 days before cake was due. I cut all of the white slats of fondant and let them dry for four days, flipping them over each day. Here’s a link to the template that I used for the chair:

http://cakecentral.com/modules.php?name=gallery&file=displayimage&pid=1716241

You have to be very patient when putting the chair together.  Have your royal icing in a bag with a small tip to pipe on little amounts to the joints that hold the chair together. It’s almost like a puzzle.

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I don’t have any sea shell molds so I searched Pinterest on how to make fondant shells. I found these great tutorials at wickedgoodies.net and this is how to make the shells above without a mold:

https://www.wickedgoodies.net/modeling-chocolate-seashell-tutorial/

For the starfish, I cut out a star with a fondant star cutter. I shaped the arms with my fingers, squeezing them at the end to make them thinner. I pressed a rubber mat on the star to give it texture. Last, I painted the star with pumpkin color petal dust to give it a little more dimension.

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The edible sand was made in my food processor with graham crackers, Vanilla Waffers and light brown sugar.  It was delicious sand!

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Plants Vs. Zombies -Chomper Cake

January 7, 2017

This week I decided to make a gravity defying cake for my son. It’s Christmas break so I had some time to fiddle with cake stuff and come up with something I’ve never made before.

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This is a Chomper! My son plays the game Plants vs. Zombies and it has so many characters that are colorful, creative and very weird. The game is made up of all kinds of plants that are fighting zombies to keep them out of their town.

I decided to make a chomper because it’s a main character in the game that eats zombies. I really wanted to create another gravity defying cake and this was a good time to do it. The shape and make-up of the chomper has nice curvy lines that have an organic flow, like the of a stem on a flower.

I got my carpenter tools out and put together pvc pipes and flanges on a solid wood base. I referenced my favorite book, Artisan Cake Company’s Visual Guide to Cake Decorating, for structure help.

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Chompers eat zombies! I decided to sculpt a half eaten zombie leg that hangs out of the mouth of the chomper. I tried to tell a story using the cake and the board together. I put footsteps in the mud on the board showing that the zombie was walking and the chomper gobbled him up, leaving only his leg.

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Here’s me and my little guy and his crazy video game.

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There wasn’t much cake in this chomper but just enough for our family. The bulk of the cake was made of Rice Krispies Treats, styrofoam and PVC. I made a couple of mistakes with the structure of the chomper but I’m so glad this was just a cake for my family….they’re my testers! The head of the chomper was in two parts, the bottom was RKT and foam and the top section was cake. The main mistake I made with the head was I put too many RKT on the bottom of the foam…hanging RKT really DON’T work. After we cut into the cake the RKT started to sag and separate from the foam. I learned my lesson!!

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Above is the aftermath of my family devouring the chomper cake. As you can see, the bottom of the chomper head totally fell off. I still have so much to learn about cake structure and sculpting. I really enjoyed making this cake for my son and learning how versatile cake can really be.

 

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Busy Cake Poppin…

December 11, 2016

This weekend my son’s school had a Craft Holiday Shop for students to buy small affordable gifts for Christmas. I decided to participate and get a table to sell some goodies. I ended up making both chocolate and vanilla cake pops that were covered in white chocolate and dark chocolate.  I also sold some hand painted ornaments that I made for next to nothing.

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The reindeer cake pops above were so simple to make. The pops were dipped in dark chocolate a left to dry. The eyes of the reindeer were Wilton white flat sprinkles with drawn on pupils with an edible pen. The noses were red fondant rolled into an oval shape and glued on with melted chocolate. After drying, I put the pops in bags and tied the bag with tan pipe cleaners.

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These cake pops are the party pops! I made these same cake pops for both of my kid’s birthday parties. Kids really gravitate to the sprinkles. I used paper straws from the craft store as the stick but I had to cut off two inches from the original straw because they were a bit long. For the pop stand, I wrapped two boxes in Christmas paper and stacked them for a cheap and easy set up.

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The snowman pops were made of vanilla cake and covered in white chocolate. I used vanilla cake on these because chocolate cake tends to make the pops very dark. After the dipped pops were dry, I piped on chocolate eyes, mouth and a orange chocolate carrot nose.

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These are my hand painted ornaments that sold pretty well. I really should have made more Cubs ornaments…we are in Chicago Cubs territory! Other ornaments that sold well were the semi personalized ones, like “BEST DAD EVER and BEST SISTER EVER.”  Now I know for next year what themes to focus on.  These ornaments were wood slices from a branch in my father-in law’s backyard. We cut 50 slices, sanded them and drilled a hole in each for the ribbon hanger. I painted and glittered each ornament with love…just like I do with cakes!

Merry Christmas everyone!

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BRUTUS the Buckeye Cake

November 20, 2016

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This weekend I created a cake for a family friend that was of the Ohio State University mascot, Brutus the Buckeye. I had no idea what a buckeye was until I did a little research on the mascot. A buckeye is a nut from Ohio that is supposed to bring you good luck when you carry it.  There’s my lesson for the day.

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Here he is, Brutus from Ohio State.

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This cake that I created was HUGE! It measured 9 inches tall by 14 inches wide. I started the cake by stacking four 11 x15 inch chocolate cakes. You can’t see it but I put a structure in the cake. Basically it’s two cakes stacked on each other with dowels to hold it up. Any cake that is over 6 inches must have dowels or some sort of support. If this cake didn’t have the structure, it would buckle and eventually fall over.

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After the cake was chilled, I used a sharp serrated knife to carve the cake into the buckeye shape.  Let’s just say I had LOTS of cake scraps that I will be using for cake pops.

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I just wanted to show you how big the cake was…and my little partner.

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I made the baseball hat out of rice krispies treats and covered it in fondant. The cake board was also covered in fondant to match Brutus’ uniform he wears for every football game. This was a fun cake to make and I’m glad I got to learn a little more about Ohio State University.

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Hand Painted Ornaments

November 12, 2016

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For the last week I haven’t done any cake stuff but I’ve been busy painting lots of ornaments for my son’s school.  I LOVE anything that has to do with paints, ribbons, glitter…anything crafty. To get this project started, my Father-in-law and I found a tree branch and cut it into 50 circle slices. I drilled holes for the ribbon hangers and used my acrylic paint to decorate the circles. Michael’s had christmas ribbons on sale for 50% off so I grabbed a couple of those. These were seriously the cheapest ornaments to make.

I made a wide variety of ornaments so there would be one for all type of people. Since we live in Chicago Cubs territory I made lots of white ornaments with the blue W for the Cubs “Fly the W” flag. And I had to make the Irish ornaments, GO IRISH!

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Gravity Defying Spaghetti Cake

November 4, 2016

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Yesterday was my husband’s birthday and this year I decided to make him a gravity defying cake. He loves spaghetti and I thought a big bowl of it would be a perfect birthday cake.

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In my last post I talked about using plastic “real” looking silver utensils for my forked cake pop eyeballs. I had left over utensils from the eyeballs so I decided to use one of these forks in my gravity defying cake. The fork is actually glued to a wooden skewer and covered in fondant and buttercream sauce. It’s so simple.

For the actual cake, I carved a chocolate cake into the shape of a tall bowl. Then, I covered it in white fondant and starting making yellow noodles. Boy, did it take me a long time to make the noodles. I used a small clay extruder when I really should have used a pasta machine. I need to invest in one of those! Anyway, I draped the noodles around the edge of the bowl and piped orange/red buttercream on top. The Amicolor gel color I actually used was called terra-cotta. I also added crushed oreo cookies to the buttercream to make it look like spices and chunks of other spaghetti ingredients.

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When I brought out the cake my kids couldn’t believe that it was a cake. I even made a piece of garlic toast out of rice krispies treats that was covered in fondant. Sometimes cakes like this are hard to eat because your mind plays tricks on you. One year, I made my husband a cake that looked like bbq chicken wings….he really had a hard time eating that one and was a little grossed out!

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What a wonderful time we had with all of our family for my husband’s birthday. We look forward to having many more! We love you, babe.

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Halloween Forked Eyeball Cake Pops

October 31, 2016

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It’s that time of year again….HALLOWEEN!!! Our family loves Halloween and this year I wanted to share how I made this spooky forked eyeball cake pop.

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So, I’m not going to go through the whole process of making a cake pop but I will share how I made the cake pop look like an eyeball. Usually lollipop sticks are used for cake pops but this time I used plastic forks that looked like real silver. I found these at Walmart but they are a bit pricey compared to normal plastic utensils.

First, I dipped the tips of the forks into melted white chocolate and stuck the fork half way through the cake ball. I placed the tray of forked cake balls in the refrigerator for 10 minutes so the chocolate glued the ball and fork together. The cake balls are then dipped into the white chocolate and placed back on to the tray. Next, I cut out circles of colored fondant for the iris of the eyes and smaller black circles for the pupils. I placed the circles on the dipped cake balls with a little bit of vegetable shortening. I took a toothpick and put a tiny dot of white chocolate on the pupil to give it a “real” eye look.  I whipped up a small batch of royal icing and colored it red for the veins in the eye. The tiniest hole was cut in the end of the piping bag so my red veins would be nice and thin when piped in the eyeball.

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Here are our spooky carved pumpkins for tonight.

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Kylo Ren and Strawberry Shortcake!

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Forrest Gump and Wednesday Addams!