So I've been watching a lot of that show Cake Boss lately and got all these ideas in my head........I wanted to try and make Makai's birthday/baptism cake for his special day....and even though I'd never ever worked with fondant before, I was excited and confident it would work out. I solicited my sister-in-law Tina for her help....because she's taken a cake decorating class before and I needed her expertise! All I can say is even though it took WAY longer than we thought it would......it turned out absolutely awesome, delicious and way better than I even imagined! Tina and I sure make a good team! :)
My idea was to have a 3-tier cake.....the bottom layer decorated with church stuff, the middle layer Utah Utes (cause Makai is like the biggest Utah fan) and an 8 on the top. Each tier would have two layers combined with filling.....and the whole thing would be decorated with fondant. That was my vision of the cake.
It actually took us 3 days to make the cake.....the first day we baked the cakes and put them in the freezer to freeze. Tina learned that technique from her cake decorating class....if you freeze the cake it will firm it up and make it easier to work with, and it will hold the moisture in so that by the time you eat it, it will be soft and moist. We probably could have done the cake in 2 days, but our hours of operation didn't ever start until all the kids were sleeping.....because with her 5 and my 3, there were way too many little wanna-be helpers! haha We usually started working at it at midnight, or even sometimes later......
Believe it or not, we actually made our own fondant......I've always heard that fondant was really hard to work with, but I was actually pleasantly surprised at how easy it was. Tina had this recipe from her cake decorating teacher.....a recipe for homemade fondant.....all it called for was marshmellows, powdered sugar, corn syrup and a little lemon extract to help with the sweetness. It took a lot of kneading....but it was pretty easy to make....we made a white batch and then made another batch that we colored for our decorations. Once we had made all the fondant and kneaded it to the point that it stopped absorbing the powdered sugar, we put it in the fridge overnight. By then, all the main stuff was ready....all we had to do was assemble it!
The next day we prepared everything we needed to put it together. We decided to make chocolate cakes, and since there were 3 tiers with 2 layers each....we baked and froze all 6 cakes. The filling that would hold the layers together was chocolate pudding and oreos......all covered with chocolate frosting and then the fondant......it was RICH and you needed milk or ice cream to help wash it down.
The putting it together was actually pretty easy....the hard part was the tedious little decorations. We bought little exacto knives and we hand carved each and every little decoration we used.....with the help of some printouts from the internet. We actually didn't finish the cake until like 930am....but now that we've done it we know different things we can do to speed up the process, just in case we decide to try this again....hahaha Of course I took a lot of pictures of our work in progress.....it was our very first 3-tiered fondant covered cake and it turned out amazing if I do say so myself! :)
My cake partner Tina
The cakes filled and stacked in their layers
All three tiers frosted and ready to be decorated
Bottom layer covered with our homemade white fondant
Second layer (didn't cooperate with us as well as the white fondant did....I think we didn't use enough powdered sugar....it was still very moist....and once it dried on the cake, you could tell it was cracking! Lesson learned to use more powered sugar!)
The tedious work of cutting out our decorations
Bottom Layer complete!
Second layer complete!
I wanted the 8 to stand up on the top of the cake, so I used a technique I learned off of Cake Boss.....I made a batch of rice krispie treats and after it set I molded it into an 8 and covered it with blue fondant....super duper easy!!
Our finished masterpiece......we are SO happy with how it turned out!!