My nephew turns ONE this week and so we made a cake to celebrate. This little number was my usual vanilla buttermilk sponge, which encountered a lot more problems than usual. Check this. Firstly I forgot to put the sugar in which I didn't notice until I poured the batter into the tins - when I thought, hang on, usually there's more of it. Which after tipping back into the mixing bowl to remix, might have resulted in the cake becoming a little more flat than usual.
Brilliantly though, my solution was effective - slice the layers really thin, sandwich with whipped cream and peaches and you don't notice the texture issues. Really. The peaches were so beautiful. I have to make a chinese style fruit cake with them before the season is over. White peaches. Beautiful and pale with a light flush. It was such a shame to hide them inside a cake.
This is the sheep in production. It was my first time working with fondant for modelling. We've played around with making roses and little flowers etc, but I did desperately want to make an Old MacDonald cake because it's my nephew's favourite song. Hence the fevered searching on youtube. As it was, once you watch them once and understand the principle, you don't need it anymore and you just freeze frame it on the final design. I did want to make a little pony to go with, however I realised it wouldn't fit on the cake.
The first thing I'd say is that it is a LOT easier to make than I thought. I thought fondant animals would be really difficult. It wasn't that bad. One thing I would recommend is the food colouring pens. Very useful for the eyes. I used ready made white and yellow icing, mixing with liquid food colouring in the main despite buying a load of paste. Guess I need to find some use for that now. The liquid food colouring leaves the fondant a little sticky, but it's still okay to form things with. The other little fyi I would say is, don't put fondant in the fridge. It ends up damp and the icing pen I used to do patches on the cow ran. I didn't plan on putting it in the fridge but we had to save the cake a night later than planned and if we didn't fridge it the cream and fruit would go a bit squiffy.
Picture of a cake slice. We sliced around five millimetres thick. Six people ate a quarter of the cake. It's a sweetness thing I think. Buttercream is one of those things we're not a major fan of. It would have been nice to work some green or blue fondant to cover the cake but we hate fondant even more than buttercream. One day I will overcome my issues with the stuff, or make marshmallow fondant which might be tastier, but until then, a bit of buttercream, unfortunately overworked by the end of it, did the trick.
My sister has her birthday soon. I think she'll be a lot happier with a chocolate mousse cake bought retail though!xx