Saturday, August 23, 2008

A Bed of Roses

A big bed of roses for a friend's beautiful little girl who turned two recently. It was good fun putting this behemoth of a cake together, intended to serve 80, and I realized in retrospect how very fortunate I was - it was only when manoeuvring the tight corners whilst fitting the finished number in the fridge that it occurred to me had the cake been any wider, longer or taller, I would be having a bit of a storage issue on my hands...Phew! Note to future self: Must measure widest, longest, tallest available fridge shelf space before deciding on cake pan dimensions.

It's a dark chocolate fudge layer cake frosted with white chocolate buttercream (which is also used to pipe the basketweave finish wrapping the sides of the cake). The roses are fashioned from very stiff royal icing - tinted a subtly variegated palette of lilac, lavender and mauve - piped using a petal tip on a flower nail. Formed petal by petal flower by flower, the roses are made ahead of time and allowed to dry thoroughly before being adhered to the surface of the iced cake - on cakes that require chilled storage, royal icing blooms hold up much better than fondant or marzipan ones. The interstices are filled with clusters of leaves, piped using the white chocolate buttercream tinted a pale kelly green.

As much as I have a personal weakness for dollhouse miniatures as far as cakes are concerned, I must confess the sense of euphoria which comes with finishing something that's the opposite extreme scale-wise is really something else!