Monday, June 25, 2012

About a "Horse"

I've been meaning to share my "horse coming out of a bale of hay" cake!  Things got a bit busy, but my "horse" cake ended up being a success - yay!!!

My directions for the cake were either a "horses head" or "horses butt" coming out of a "bucket" or a "hay bale".  I thought the bucket might be a bit more difficult to do - not that I am looking for the "easy"way, but I just need a bit more experience!  I also decided on doing a horses head.  Maybe a bit "cuter"???

I made an 8 in. chocolate square cake with that wonderful oreo filling I did in the last cake - soooo love it!  For the hay bale I decided on using the "grass tip" on the decorating bag and dragged it across the cake.  I used 2 colors: butter yellow and brown (light) and place them both next to each other in the bag.  I did a rope border along the bottom of the cake. 

Now how do a I make a horse???  I don't know what people did before Google was invented!  I googled a LOT of horses!  I ended up using chocolate fondant and shaping it into a horse.  Here is what I came up with:

 If you ever need a horse cake, I'm your girl!!!  :)

I will keep you posted on my next adventure!   Thanks for stopping by!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

I Have So Much To Learn!

I delivered the "1st Birthday" cake to the neighbor this morning at around 10:45.  Yes, finished it.  Yes, it was way more work than I thought.  It was  a good thing I had Thurs. and Fri. off from my "real job".  I really didn't plan for my chocolate cake to crack into 5 pieces and the 2 extra runs to Market Basket for ingredients.  So how did the cake turn out? 

The cake was for around 30 people.  I went back and forth from a sheet cake to a 2 tier.  I ended up doing a 2 tier (think it serves the whole town), but in the end realized I didn't have a box high enough so I had to be flexible and figure it out.  The top tier was a round 8 in. chocolate cake with an Oreo filling.  Oh, by the way, LOVE the oreo filling (got the recipe from the Whimsical Bakehouse) - highly recommend it!  The bottom 1o in. square was a vanilla cake with buttercream icing.  I iced both tiers in buttercream and used straws to stack the cake.  Along with the royal icing butterflies, I made some royal icing drop flowers.   I really hope the cake tastes good!  

What I learned from this cake:  
1. A lot CAN go wrong... and it WILL!  I was so discouraged the 1st cake I made fell apart.  It couldn't even be saved.  
2. Baking takes a lot of time.  No really, a LOT!
3. Recipes are all trial and errror. Even if I've used them before, they may decide they don't want to work that day.
4. One has to be VERY organized - something I need to work on.
5.  My kitchen really isn't big enough :)  And I'm not getting along with my oven.  She's not cooperating.
6.  I need at least a 100 lb bag of confectioner's sugar on hand.  Is that exagerating? 

Ok, I promised a pic.  Here is the cake:

Now back to that "horse" cake I'm working on for this afternoon.....

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Playing With Royal Icing

I have a few cakes to make - yayyy!!!  For my neighbors :)   It will give me great practice!

Ok - one is a "horse coming out of a hay bale" - I  have yet to start it, but I do have a  very nice sketch done.  You better believe I will keep you posted on that one!  I plan on doing a square cake and covering it in maybe a yellow/lt. brown tip 233 grass tip.  I"ve decided to use chocolate fondant formed over rice krispy treats for the horse.  But I will get back to that in a few days!

Today I went to the airport to work a beautiful 2 day trip with a 24  hr. layover in LA only to have it cancel.  So I had to spend my afternoon doing something having to do with cake when I got home!   Why not play with royal icing?

My 2nd cake request is for a girl's 1st Birthday.  My only instructions were, "1/2 chocolate, 1/2 vanilla cake".  Ok..... that leaves a lot open!  I plan to bake the cakes separately and put them together.  I find that my chocolate cakes are always done sooner, so I don't think I will attempt baking them in the same pan.  Now what should I do for decorations?  How about pink and purple butterflies?  Here is what I came up with:
As I was looking for a butterfly to trace (rather than free hand, of course), I realized there was one right on my coffee table :)  These coasters from Pier 1 were perfect!  I taped a piece of wax paper over them and traced the butterfly with icing.  I outlined with "violet" royal icing and filled in the butterflies with "rose petal" icing slightly thinned out.  And there you have it!  Do you think they will work?  Any other ideas for a 1st Birthday cake?  Oh, forgot - has to serve at least 30!

As they started to dry, I filled in with some random designs of my own :)  

I will update you on more of the 2 cakes.... including the HORSE!  I also just ordered some "dummie" cakes - I have to keep practicing!!!


Tuesday, May 22, 2012


It's been a week and a half since Wilton, and I've spent a lot of time "brainstorming".  I've done a little practice of decorating techniques at home, and I've studied our downstairs for possible "renovating".    I even contacted the Georgetown Board of Health about home kitchen requirements - I"m addicted!

I broke down and took another class - with Amanda Oakleaf (again)!  This time I signed up for something I never thought I'd give a chance:  FONDANT
Why do you ask that I"d never give it a chance?  I"m one of those people who believe nothing should be on a cake if it's not edible.  Fondant tastes horrible! No, really, it does.   So, why bother?  I'm trying to be more accepting.  It's huge in the cake world and if I want to ever get ahead, I need to learn how this technique  is done.  There are beautiful cakes out there with Fondant!!!    Brides LOVE fondant decorated cakes! 

Why Amanda Oakleaf's?  Her Cakery specializes in Fondant (amazing artists work there), and they only use something called Marshmallow Fondant which supposedly tastes much better.  Her staff recently met up with Duff from Ace of Cakes and he was even impressed with their fondant from what was said.  So what did I think?   Ok, it's "edible" .... still don't love it and I hate to leave anything uneaten on my cake plate :)  But it does taste better than other other one I've tried!

The class was great!  Tim and Julie who work with Amanda taught the class.  I had seen Tim on some you-tube videos on-line.  He has a great personality and it was nice to come home with a few recipes!  We learned how to make their signature "marshmallow fondant"(got recipe, too!) and then covered our small 3-tier cakes (with Itlalian Buttercream on them!!!).  It wasn't as difficult a process as I thought it would be.  Then we did some simple fondant decorations.  Of course you're waiting for some pics!  Here is the outcome:

                      Bottom pic -  my favorite!  Cutting in and enjoying the CAKE!!!

Not too bad!  They do offer a Part II class I may take where you make a 'tiered' fondant cake.   I still think I"m much better with buttercream, but I"m keeping an open mind and want to learn all there is to learn out in the cake world!

I will keep you posted on my downstairs renovations and where I'm going with the whole thing!  As for my "real" job at the moment... my vacation ends in a few days (so sad)...... and I'd rather stay home and make cakes  :)

Have great day!