Baby Giraffe Baby Shower Cake for Steffanie

January 27, 2011

My friend Alani came to me and asked if I was interested in making a baby shower cake that she was throwing for her friend... "Yes!"  Why wouldn't I?

With a small number of girls attending,  I decided to make a two layered 8" cake.  The flavor chosen was a milk chocolate cake filled with strawberry puree.  For the look of the cake, it was to reflect the jungle theme.  I decided to focus on the giraffe that was used on the invitations.  I automatically had a vision of a giraffe joey laying on its tummy.  How cute!

I first started with each part of the giraffe and shaped it out of a 50/50 mixture of gumpaste and fondant.  A lollipop stick was used for the structure of the neck and head. I used a styrofoam cup to prop up the giraffe head as it dried.  I shaped the body and made indentations where the limbs would fit, and left these to harden a day prior to baking.

My basic chocolate cake recipe was used for the 2 layers of cake, which was cooled completely and placed in the fridge for 15 mins before handling.  Chocolate is the hardest cake to carve, handle, or to ice because of it's super soft texture.  Chilling it for a few minutes helps with that problem.  I torted the two layers and filled each one with a generous scoop of strawberry puree filling.  I made sure leave a good amount of chunky bits for full strawberry experience.  The layers of cakes were stacked high and leveled before I thinly iced the entire cake with a smooth, velvety buttercream.  The cake was then covered with my fave chocolate fondant and smoothed to perfection.  Green colored vanilla fondant was then rolled out thinly for the eyelet circle and various blades of grass that accented the sides.  I used a ribbon cutter to create the yellow frame around the eyelet circle for a lovely contrast of colors.  The giraffe was centered on the cake and sugar-glued into position.  To finish of the cake, a few more leaves, royal icing drop flowers, and a beading of yellow fondant around the base.  Congrats to Steffanie!

Time to play ball! A baseball mitt cake for Brian

January 26, 2011

What do you do when you order a gift and it doesn't get there in time?!  You order a cake!  That is exactly what Annie did for her fiance for his birthday.  She custom ordered a baseball mitt for Brian, but it wouldn't be delivered in time for his small family gathering.  After discussing ideas with Annie, we decided on a 8" round cake topped off with a dimensional mitt that wouldn't be short of details.

The cake started with an image of the closed-web mitt, and a moist red velvet cake. The bottom cake was a 3" tall round, torted and filled with cream cheese filling.  The mitt layer of the cake was carved out of a 2" layer of red velvet.  I took a picture of the ordered mitt and sized it proportionally to the diameter of the cake and printed a template that I used to carve the cake.  I exaggerated some of the cuts to ensure that they wouldn't be lost once covered with fondant.  I then smoothed on a thin layer of cream cheese flavored buttercream over the entire cake.  The top portion of the cake received a smooth blanket of black fondant, and the bottom was covered with a wide strip of bright blue.  Using a quilting wheel, leather stitches were imprinted to create a realistic sewing pattern.  To create the closed-web look of the mitt, I weaved strips of black fondant together and then trimmed to the proper shape and size.  A mitt can't be complete with out the ball!  I used this area to pipe out a message to the birthday boy.  To finish off the cake, baseballs were cut out of white fondant and the red accents were piped on with buttercream.  Time to play ball!. . . I mean eat cake!

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