Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Cherry Blossom Cake

This cake is for my inspiration.  She is a member at the gym and when she first signed up she was taking a Group X class….. kickboxing.  I went to check on her to see how she liked the class and she happened to be setting up for the next class….. a Les Mills Body Pump class.  I was in AWE…. I mean the kickboxing class kicks my butt!  After that class I’m done!  So for her to set up for two difficult classes in a row….. just amazed me.
I know some of you are probably wondering why is that so amazing?  Well this cake I made for is in celebration of her 76th birthday!  Yup you got it, 76 years old!  Now isn’t she your inspiration too!  I asked her what her secret was and she replied that fitness is a very important part of her life.  She’s been doing it for years.  It’s what keeps her healthy and happy.  She’s proof of that.  She’s an amazing lady!
This cake is carrot cake with cream cheese frosting.  Carrot cake is a favorite flavor of many so I make it often.  However not very often with the fondant on top.  Why?  Because the cream cheese frosting and fondant fight with each other. I could use a more crusting cream cheese frosting but it would be extremely sweet and the carrot cake is sweet enough.  I like the traditional cream cheese frosting which is just enough sweetness for the cake. 
Pink flowers are made of 50/50 gp/fondant.  The fondant was pink and I added petal dust with a lil luster dust to pop it out.  Branches are hand painted.  One thing I want to learn more is the hand painting.  I love the look when it’s done. 
What I learned from this cake:  When baking the carrot cake it usually has a hard outer crust so usually no need to trim.  When applying the crumb coat around the cake, have it extremely thin just enough to cover the cake.  Let the cake show through if it has to.  No need to put another layer of frosting.  When I laid the fondant on top, I hadn’t trimmed the cake board and thus the fondant laid over it and wrinkled up.  Yes the fondant and I had a fight!  I ended up winning, I think Smile  Next time prior to laying the fondant over, I generally like to have it set on a support to where I can fold the fondant under.  I seem to get a cleaner cover that way.
Fondant and I are still getting to know each other.  It takes a lot of practice to achieve perfection with this sugar and I WILL conquer its challenge!

Monday, February 13, 2012


 This cake is made for Stevie (A Personal Trainer) who collects Nike shoes.  Yup he has a collection.  I've seen a photo of his closet and I can tell you ladies, he has all you beat in the shoe collection!

I graphically designed a piece that would go along the side of the shoe.  Stevie  always has a unique way of verbally expressing himself.  One of his clients, and a personal friend of mine, gave me some of those sayings he uses so uniquely.  I added my personal favorite he says ..... EEEE'YEAH.

Pretty much all my cakes are first time creations for me.  This one I thought would be pretty simple but it was harder then I thought it would be.  Maybe it would have been easier if I had given myself more time. 

First and most frustrating, I ended up wasting about 1-1/2 hours at the bakery getting an edible sugar sheet printed out.  The lady in the bakery didn't know what she was doing.  Tried printing it out three times (wasting those precious and expensive sugar sheets and edible ink) to tell me after waiting about 30 minutes, I have to wait for the other girl to return from lunch to have it printed because she couldn't get it right.  "URGH!" I hate when my time is wasted!  After another 45 minutes I finally got my sugar sheet done but not good enough.  So I need to work with what I had. --------> I need to just buy my own machine.  After I spend the $ on this so many times, it'll be paid off and I can do it right THE FIRST TIME.

My start time was 3:30pm Sunday, February 12th.  My end time, 10pm Sunday night.

1) I took 1-1/2 large frozen sheet cakes and a template 
and cut four layers.  Filled with buttercream, then
put back into the fridge to set up firm. After set, I 
began carving.  My one dislike on my carving was
I wish I had made the front more narrow.  

2) RKT added to make the back of the shoe and 
the tongue

3) After completely carved, I crumb coated with
the vanilla buttercream.  Now back to the fridge
to set up.  Then pulled out and smoothed. 
Repeated this a couple of times.

After crumb coat is set, I covered with fondant and decorated. 
I was tired and got lazy and instead of rolling the white fondant
out in one full piece to cover, I did it in pieces.  NOT the way
I would do this next time.  Makes it for a messy look and in turn
ended up taking longer.  

I was not satisfied with this look that you see above and it 
bothered me all night.  Yup another sleepless night!  
Which means I got up at 4am and pulled off some pieces to
replace with others.  Finished the shoe laces, then placed on the
cake board that had been decorated earlier with wording and ribbon.

The finished cake :)

Stevie was HAPPY :)

Thursday, February 9, 2012


For Lizette's (one of 24 Hour Fitness/San Ramon's incredible Personal Trainers) birthday.  I knew she liked wine and always made comments on my husband's cake, so I knew exactly what to make for her.  It was a new recipe; chocolate cake with an espresso (Peet's Coffee's espresso) buttercream.  Covered in home made marshmallow fondant and hand painted.  I digitally created the image (see below) and had it printed out on edible sugar.  I wish I had my own printer so I could ensure it's color was more accurate.  A lot of times (surprisingly) the people that work within the stores bakery don't always know what they are doing.

The biggest complication of this cake is painting the bottle.  It's hard to get a look without drippings or brush strokes showing.  Takes a lot of patience and time.  One issue was the shortening which I use to smooth out some of the fondant in some areas.  Well shortening acts as a barrier.  Lesson learned: Eliminate shortening to smooth out fondant. Task: Find another way to smooth it out.

Wine Bottle Cake 2/9/12

Lizette & her Cake
After the cake is FINALLY cut.  She didn't want to cut it ;)
I created this label with multiple photos

Sunday, February 5, 2012

TRAGIC but not so TRAGIC story for this Patron Cake

I work at a gym and had this cake on display for the Birthday Girl to arrive and see as she walked in. It was sitting right behind me in what I thought was safe keeping until....... A man of about the age of 50ish or so all sweaty after working out and talking on the phone, walks up to the cake and picks it up by the NECK! The trainer that was talking to me sees this and was like......"No, oh no....." then her head goes down. I asked "WHAT?!" and she tells me what the sweaty man does. I turn around and the cake is still all intact (And to think that I was worried about the drive in the car). I was with beyond words that someone would do such a thing. 

The only damage to the cake was he dented my ribbon a lil bit and put his ugly sweaty finger prints on it. Not to mention and most importantly, who wants to eat the cake now?! 
Now I know how you cake artists feel after a tragic event happens to a cake. 
I was so mad that I actually had to leave the area before I attacked the dumbass with words of: 

  1. Look with your eyes, not your hands DUMBASS!
  2. Does it have your name on it to touch it at all?.....DUMBASS!
  3. Ummmm hello, Patron is clear NOT white.....DUMBASS!
  4. What gives you the right to touch this or anything for that matter within this area!....DUMBASS!
After the man touched the cake, he walked away like he did nothing wrong. No apologies..... NOTHING. Not that I would accept it anyway. Lesson learned..... PUT A BIG SIGN SAYING..... "THIS IS A CAKE.....KEEP YOUR SWEATY PAWS OFF OF IT!......DUMBASS!!!!

Cake is made of:
  • Pistachio Cake with Pistachio Filling. 
  • Home made Marshmallow Fondant
  • Hand painted with the exception of the label
  • I created the label digitally myself.
  • Unfortunately I had run out of time and had only time to print out a label on clear film.  Brushing the fondant with water made it become adhesive.  She would have to remove the image prior to cutting the cake.

Money Cake for our District Manager

For someone who LOVES to collect money or just MAKE IT.

  • Chocolate cake with white buttercream and raspberry filling.  
  • The Million Dollars is from an image I did and had it printed out on edible sugar to adhere to the top.  
  • I used my Silhouette to cut all the signs.  
  • The coins are from See's candy (Only the best chocolate around).  
  • The money bag is made from cake pop ingredients then covered in fondant and airbrushed.
Needless to say the Big Daddy totally loved it and was very surprised.