Happy Sunday! This week brings a little Indian themed Birthday Cake. While not complicated to decorate it was anything but easy to do. A lot of people think that this type of cake requires a huge event and budget in order to warrant the effort. For me this is a bit of the "save the China for special occasions" type thinking. I don't do that either! LOL! I believe that if someone you love is having a special occasion then they deserve a really special cake. Even if the person having the special occasion is you!
This little 6 inch marble cake with chocolate brownie buttercream filling was easy to bake, easy to fill and easy to cover with the first layer of red fondant. That is where the easy stopped. I added the little trim triangles all the way around the top and bottom edges of the cake using a cutter for accuracy and a little water as glue. And this is where I caught the first hitch.
Cakes tend to have a definite front and back. The front is the part of the cake that looks the most perfect and the back is where you hide the imperfections! The hitch in trimming this cake is that there was about a half triangle left of empty space left over...in other words, not enough space to fit in another triangle. So automatically THAT became the back part of the cake! I trimmed off the upper corners of a triangle and inserted it into the space. I did the same with the other trim line so that the imperfect spot would be lined up in the back. Finally I cut out and placed the flower shapes onto the cake.
Then came the hard part. I made the Royal Icing for this cake in a big batch (it saves nicely in mason jars for a couple of weeks) and then took about a cup of that and tinted it orange. Then I started the piping onto the cake. Piping like this is very hard on your hands. I got about a third of the way around when I had to rest, stretch my hands, and then begin again. If you have ever piped a lot of stars on a cake then you know the feeling I'm talking about. You can take a lot of breaks with this style of cake so bank enough time.
I started with long lines along the triangles almost meeting at the tip of each triangle. When I finished all of the lines I then started again with the loops. When those were finished I piped the details on to the flowers. And then let it all dry for about 30 minutes. It needed to be very hard for the hand painting step to come.
Once all of the royal icing was dry I was able to mix up the gold edible paint. I mix the luster dust with vodka but you can use clear vanilla if you wanted to do so. The alcohol evaporates off of the paint so it doesn't really matter which one you use. I add in just enough to get a thin paint consistency. Then, using a fine tip brush, I began painting all of the royal icing. With most metallic's it takes more than one coat of paint to get solid coverage. It took me three coats to get everything gold.
The last touch was the little gold balls. I just used a dab of the royal as glue and hit each point and the centers of each flower. Once those were in place the cake was finally done.
One of the most often asked questions I get about cake decorating is how long it takes. It varies from cake to cake and how much preparation there needs to be done before the actual decorating begins but a small cake like this one would normally take about an hour, maybe two. But due to the piping and then the painting this cake took me 4 hours and I charged $90 or $6 per slice. My starting cake per slice is $4 but due to the extra labor and time this one cost a bit more.
So whether it's your birthday, your sister's graduation, celebrating a new job or promotion, I hope you will consider celebrating it up big with a beautiful but little cake!
This week brings an unusual wedding cake! See you next Sunday! In the meantime stop by our Facebook Fan Site for daily tips and tricks!