Sunday, September 11, 2016

Cake Edition - Thomas the Tank Engine, Paddington's Suitcase, Minion, Xylophone, and Paw Patrols' Lookout

I used to bake a cake, splat some icing on it and call it done. Then I went back to work after having my son and I guess some Mummy guilt kicked in coupled with a bit of "If she/he can do it I can do it"

Sprog's first birthday cake was a standard banana cake with chocolate icing. Sprog's second birthday cake was for a Thomas the Tank Engine themed party, so we needed a Thomas the Tank Engine cake. I baked banana cake, mostly because I had a lot of banana's to use up. Two slabs, which I then cut and stacked to get the right shape for a Tank Engine. Earlier in the week I coloured fondant and made wheels and a face using an online tutorial to guide me.

I fondant-ed the whole cake. It was my first time using fondant; I went a little overboard. If I were to make this cake again, and Widget's interests indicate I might, I would ice with butter icing, then accent with fondant, rather than doing the whole thing. 


The next year for Sprogs Third birthday, Widget was 3 months old, and I went for something simpler. It was a Paddington Bear themed party, and the cake was his suitcase. I made the cake slabs ahead of time with Sprogs help then froze them.  I made the "hardware" for the suitcase a few days out to give them time to dry and kept back enough fondant in the right colour to make the name shield and the corner protectors on the day. The writing I did with a skewer and black gel icing. 

Husband got in on the act, and I made a Star Wars themed cake for his birthday. Only a simple one the first time round. The letters are in black fondant, with butter icing as a base and yellow piping. The figurines my brother bought for Husband as a present and they made a great addition. 

A single dad friend was throwing having a party for his son. He was at a loss cake-wise so I made a cake for Master 4's Minion party. This time I cheated a little and used packet mixes for the cake, with yellow and blue colouring mixed in. I stacked the two yellow on top of the two blue cakes, with butter icing as glue. I covered the lot in yellow butter Icing then wrapped on blue fondant overalls. The top of the cake had the dungaree straps and fondant goggles and eyes, and I cut a smile into the yellow butter icing and pricked a Gru logo and buttons into the front pocket of the overalls.


Widget's first birthday was next, and he had a relatively simple cake, by my new standards. He had been showing interest in music/noise making so a simple cake that was still more than a basic cake was a xylophone, based on his plastic toy xylophone. Each key is made of fondant, as is the head of the bommy-knocker. The fondant is kept off the icing, and therefore dry, by licorice logs, with another licorice log as the handle on the bommy-knocker.

The last cake to bring us up to date was the Paw Patrol lookout tower. Sprog was in a big Paw Patrol phase when he turned 4 and had a Paw Patrol themed party. To complete the look was a Chase pup painted on the window, still there 6 months later, and a themed cake. The Paw Patrol lookout tower looks like this.

I made 4 cakes worth of cake in the end. Two as one  big chocolate slab cake, and two circular banana cakes. I considered making the whole thing out of cake, but it would have been too unstable. 

The chocolate slab I cut a hole out of and iced green with a grey fondant road. in the hole I put an Easiyo container. I taped another Easiyo container to the bottom part of a springform cake tin. A second springform tin bottom I taped to a ramekin, and cut a hole out of one of the circular cakes to fit it in the middle. The easiyo tin sat inside the first with a circular cake with a hole in it on top, then the ramekin and cake tin assembly sat in the middle of that. I made sure it all fit together and was relatively sturdy, then took it all apart and got decorating. 


The  final touch was the periscope. That was a couple of straws wrapped in fondant. When they were iced everything was carefully put together again then no one was allowed to touch it, and in the case of young people, go near it until it was cake eating time. 

So cakes. They are a thing I've started doing.