Monday, January 16, 2012

7th birthday number 2, for Anna

Here the brief was slightly less strict, but nonetheless a challenge.  A giant cupcake for a girl that wasn't too girly, and had to feature blue.  After some discussion, it was decided that the icing was to be cream with blue stars, and also vanilla flavour cake and icing.
Ok, here goes.  I had recently come across a few more recipes for giant cupcakes but was loathe to try a new one for an order, in case it went wrong and I wouldn't have time or ingredients to re-bake.  So I went for my trusted recipe and started early in the morning, to allow the baked cake plenty of time to cool.  So far, so good.
Uh oh - not so good.  When I thought the cakes (baked in 2 separate halves, as you do) were cool enough, I tried to remove the silicon mould from the base.  Seriously bad move, as not all the cake pulled away from the side of the mould.  This meant that there wouldn't be a smooth, shaped base to my giant cupcake - but what could I do to rectify it??  Lucky that I had started baking early, because after the nursery walk I had to dash home to re-bake the base!
And as if that wasn't issue enough, I then had to calculate how much time I had available before needing to collect the girls from nursery and school versus how long it would take to mix up then bake the cake.  And the answer?  They would both need to be done at the exact same time - aaarrrggghhh.  So, I waited a bit in order to put the cake in a bit later and for a bit lower a temperature, then left it baking while I did the school dash.  Woo hoo - it worked!
So to decorate - I had seen a photo somewhere that showed a giant cupcake base cut in half and jammed then jammed and buttercreamed in the middle and jammed again halfway through the top half.  I thought that was a great idea, because - to me anyway - it seems like there's far too much of a cake to filling ratio.  So I jammed the base halfway through, then had seen a video (was trying to find it there, to give you the link, but no luck - sorry) on how to use fondant to ice the bottom half.  It didn't look to hard, so I tried it.  And it worked!  I then crumb-coated the top half and popped it in the fridge to set.
I hadn't thought to crumb-coat a giant cupcake before, but had seen it done (perhaps on the same video as above?) and it seemed very sensible.  It also gave me time to tidy the table in order to do the icing roses and decorations later on.  And so we come to the finished product - they loved it!!!
Can you see I used my new toys again?  Floral embossing mat and alphabet embossing set, as mentioned in the previous 7th birthday post.  Oh, and a little aside - you may (or maybe not) be surprised to learn that this and the other 7th birthday girl met in utero, but haven't really met up again since.  Odd the way things work out.  We're back in touch again now, so that will probably change soon ;)