Monday, August 26, 2013

Minecraft Birthday Cake

I am now aware that the video game Minecraft has captured the hearts and minds of young people everywhere.
I had never heard of this game or played it until my friend requested a cake for his son's birthday.
The theme...Minecraft.
Again, Google saved me from complete failure.
He only needed 20 servings but wanted the WOW! factor of a two tier cake.
I decided on a 8 and a 4 inch square cake for 24 servings with nice clean lines seeing as the game is made up of pixels.
I went about making this cake the same way I did the baby in a box cake with side panels made of a 60/40 mix of gumpaste and fondant.

I made these to the height and width I planned on making the cake using a template made of computer paper. This one is from

Let them dry overnight.

Next I needed to make some pixels to pattern the brown panels.
I was making a dirt block so I needed 2 shades of brown, 2 shades of green, and 2 shades of grey.
I rolled out some fondant in each color and using the template I embossed lines , then with a ruler and Exacto knife I cut out the square pixels.

Again I used my template to lay out the pattern seeing as I have no clue how these patterns come about in the game .
I attached the little squares to the brown panels with a small dab of water.
Let these dry as long as possible.
Fortunately I had about 4 days.
For the top tier I decided to make a dynamite block or at least that's what I am calling it. Sorry Minecrafters if that isn't correct.
I made four red gumpaste / fondant panels for the sides and allowed them to dry.

Once my 8 inch cake was baked, cooled, torted, filled and iced I roughed up the buttercream and stuck the pixel-ed panels to the sides and top.

If they have any overhang trim with a sharp new Exacto knife blade.
If you have any gaps, fill them in with buttercream in a similar color.

Finally I stacked the dynamite on top. I used 1 dowel rod under this cake seeing as it was only 4 inch .
I downloaded a font similar to the Minecraft  logo from dafont to make the birthday boy's name and ' TNT ' for the top tier.
Cut these out and set aside.
I iced and covered my 4 inch cake and placed a layer of red fondant on the top.
Attach the red gumpaste/ fondant sides, wrap with a white band made of fondant and add the letters TNT.

A 10 year old's dream cake.

Very simple to make, yet very tedious.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Hot Wheels Cake Topper

My life is full of coincidences if that's what you want to call them.
A few posts back I wrote about a coincidence that my childhood neighbor ended up being my neighbor again 25 years later and 25 miles from where we grew up.
Another coincidence is that 2 of my best friends and I were all pregnant at the same time, in our mid-30's long after most of our other friends started their families.
My best friend in high school,  my best friend after high school and I all have sons born one month apart.
My friend Janet and I have been to the edge of the earth and back, I swear.
Good times, bad times, crazy times, all times. 
She was my guinea pig when I started baking and can vividly remember my first strawberry cake with kiwi frosting. Yes, it was as bad as it sounds and I haven't lived it down.
The least I can do for the woman who sacrificed her taste buds and appetite while I got this baking thing down pat is make a cake topper for her son's 4th birthday.
I normally do cupcake toppers so this cake topper will give me a break from the tedious little details of hundreds of cupcake toppers.

He is crazy about Hot Wheels right now so that's the theme of his party.
I decided to do the tire and wheel with the flames for the topper.

I found a font similar to the Hot Wheels font here and instead of Hot Wheels in the flames it will say his name.
My original intent was to have it say Happy Birthday but It was too many letters to fit in the flame in the font size I used.

I printed a template for the flame using this graphic and enlarged it on my copy machine to the size I needed. You can find a bunch of different photos in a huge variety of sizes just searching the internet.

I placed my computer print out on top of some fondant rolled to 1/4 inch thickness and covered with wax paper ( to prevent the computer paper from sticking ) .

I did the same with the letters. I made a template on computer paper and with an Exacto knife cut out out the letters. 
I do mine in reverse so that I can just wet them and stick them on to the intended surface.

For the letters I used white fondant shaded with yellow petal dust that I applied with a brush.

For the tire I rolled out back fondant to 1/4 inch thickness and used the lid to my fondant as an outline cutting out a large circle.

With my star cutter I made notches all the way around the tire at even intervals for tread.

I used one of my round cutters to slightly indent where the wheel will be positioned in the tire and to use as a guide when laying the trim in place.

Next I rolled out some grey fondant 1/4 inch thick and used the same cutter I used to indent the tire where the wheel will go to make the wheel.

Next I freehand cut 5 notches out for the spokes.

Apply the wheel to the tire using a little water and with a clay extruder press out the 'trim'.

Instead of a tire brand, I used my Tappits to cut out Happy Birthday and I put a 4 in the center cap.

Finally I attached the flame to the tire.

Be sure to keep your pieces sealed up in a ziploc type bag while you are making them to prevent any drying and cracking.

With some of the left over black fondant my friend asked if I could just make some squares because she wants to set some real Hot Wheels on the cake and not have them sink into the buttercream.
Good idea!
But just black squares, naaah, little patches of road!
I rolled out the fondant to 1/4 inch thickness again and cut some rectangles.

With my clay extruder I piped out stripes of yellow and white fondant and applied them to the black rectangles with some water to look like stripes on the road.

I stuck one of my son's cars on there for a test drive to check the width and length.

After all this , the hard part was yet to come. Mailing these out to the desert where they live ... where it has been 104 degrees lately.
Let's see if they made it.

...and they did.
Happy Birthday Jayse!