Sunday, November 8, 2009

Tutorial: Macie's Birthday Cake

Macie's Birthday Cake

What I love about making cakes for friends and family is that I get to be unabashedly creative. It's very liberating and I think I do my best work when I'm free to make whatever cake I dream up in my head. Luckily, I find inspiration from everything around me. I could be flipping through a fashion magazine and be fascinated by a pretty print on a dress. I might be watching a movie and be captivated by the colorful scenery. I may even find inspiration from looking at a wrought iron balcony. Once I've got an idea to go with, I just pull out my sketchbook and start drawing. Sometimes I'll draw because I'm brainstorming for a cake project and sometimes I just draw for the fun of it.

"Girly" Cake Sketch

This particular cake was from a sketch I was doing for fun. I was just playing around with a whimsical pattern I made and colored it red, pink, orange and brown to give it an exotic feel. I imagined it would be a gorgeous wedding cake for couple or even a fabulous sweet sixteen birthday cake for a very lucky girl. Well, I decided to make a scaled down version for my cousin Macie. Lucky girl :-)

I used my hybrid buttercream frosting to cover the cake and pipe the borders. People always asked me how I get the sides to be so smooth. When I was learning how to frost cakes at school, I had trouble making the sides smooth too. No matter how steady I hold my off-set spatula, I could never get it to be perfect. But while I was working at a bakery, I discovered a really handy tool called a smoothing and decorating comb. Once you've frosted the cake, just hold the straight edge of the smoother next to the side, spin the revolving cake stand (or you can use a lazy susan) and the frosting will become nice and smooth.

Macie's Birthday Cake - Flower

To make the flower medallions, I used rolled fondant, a round cookie cutter and a cookie stamp. I used yellow and orange food color to paint the fondant. Then I piped chocolate ganache in the center and lightly brush it with gold luster dust. I did the same thing on the petals.

Cookie stamp

I also used chocolate ganache to pipe the scrollwork pattern on the sides. After I let the ganache firm up in the fridge, I brushed over it with a little bit of gold luster dust.

Macie's Birthday Cake - Scrolls

I repeated the scrollwork pattern on top of the cake. For the plaque, I use rolled fondant and a round cookie cutter. I wrote the birthday greeting with a black food color pen and finished the plaque by piping chocolate ganache around the border.

Macie's Birthday Cake - Top

I was very pleased with how the finished cake turned out. It actually looked even better than my sketch. And most importantly, my cousin loved it :-)

Macie's Birthday Cake - Side 1


Irmina Díaz-Frois Martín said...

¡Oh! Muy, muy agradable.

LadybugLuggage said...

Very creative indeed, thank you for sharing ;)

Forever Owen said...

It is beautiful! Thank you for sharing your passions and talents! I'm sure it tastes as delicious as it looks!

Sugar Siren said...

oh this looks lovely, I love the colours. Thanks for sharing your tips.

Jessie said...

truly beautiful. i love it! thank you for the great post!

madame sucre said...

this looks so elegant !! well done! love it!

Anna said...

Beautiful cake!!

Anonymous said...

That looks too nice to eat, though ;)



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