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Monday, October 12, 2015

Roses are pink, I need something to bake, 'Cause it's my BIRTHDAY, So I'll make a (dress) cake!



Last year, I started making my own birthday cake.  I'll spare you the multiple reasons (I listed them in my prior post, and they haven't really changed.  So this would be year two of the annual make-my-own-birthday cake post. (Two times is enough to make it a tradition, right?)

Year 2 (of the tradition) and year 35 (of my life) started off with a commitment not to make the same mistake as last year.  Namely, trying to bake the cake, make the frosting, make the filling, and decorate -- all the night before my birthday.  It made for a slightly stressful day before the big day.  So this year, I made the topper a month in advance and set it aside.  The cake was baked a couple weeks in later, filled, frosted, and frozen.  A couple days before my birthday, I defrosted the cake in the fridge, bringing it to rest at room temperature the night before.  And finally, I decorated the cake on the day of my birthday.  Now this is definitely the way to do it.

So the cake of the day (and my year, I suppose) was modeled on a fancy dress.  I took the easy way out and purchased the Wilton Wonder Mold Doll Cake kit.  Basically, this contains a pan that is shaped like an upside down beehive, which would make the skirt of the dress (or a beehive, if that's the way you wanted to go.) Technically, you can also make this cake by using a mixing bowl for pan (but I'm not sure if any of mine are oven safe,) or by baking a bunch of round cakes and then carving them to the shape desired (but I thought that may derail the whole anti-stress thing. . .)  The cake pan kit worked fine, so it was a win.

In order of how the cake was composed:

Bodice of the dress

Luckily for me, the dress kit came with a doll pick.   For those of you who are unaware, a doll pick is the top half of a barbie-doll-like figure, with a spike coming out of the torso, to attach to the cake itself.  Although I am a child at heart, I definitely did not want a barbie doll cake, so I had the somewhat macabre task of beheading the doll pick (it was pretty easy, actually -- the head just pops off, although then I had to snap off the joint with some kitchen shears) as well as amputating the upper extremities (also which pretty much just popped off, but, again, then the joints had to be snapped off.)




 Now, what's left is the dress form.  You know, the one dressmakers have on which to hang garments? To add drama , I covered the top part of the bust in black fondant.  Basically, just rolled out a circle, draped it on top of the "neck" and smoothed around and down until there weren't any creases visible.  This took a little finesse since it was such an odd shape.  Anywhere there was a crease, I lifted the fodant up and out and smoothed down again.  (Sort of like for a cake, but a really tiny, really oddly shaped cake.) Then the ends were trimmed and tidied. 


 

 

 As you can see, there still is plenty of the original colored doll; that needs to be covered as well, but will get covered eventually by the "fabric."  Adding additional black fondant would only make the whole thing bulkier and difficult to manage.

To make things easier on myself, I decided to simply do a strapless design for the top.  For this, I rolled out a strip (literally a strip, long and thin) of white fondant.  I used my imprint mat, to press a design on the strip, and then wrapped the whole thing around the mold, making sure to cover all of mold that hadn't already been covered.




 


 After that, I painted the "material" with a gold luster dust dissolved in a little bit of alcohol.  A trim of sugar pearls were added to the neckline along with a few sugar pearl "buttons" at the back.










Finally, the black portion of the mold was cleaned with some alcohol to get the excess sparkle off and the whole thing was stuck in a Styrofoam sheet to dry.



Rose Infused White Cake with White Chocolate Whipped Filling 
and 
Champagne Whipped Cream Frosting

Cake

Ingredients:
1 box white cake mix
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1 small white chocolate Jello pudding mix

3 egg whites and 1 whole egg
1 cup sour cream
1 cup milk
2 tsp rose water
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup melted butter

Process:
Whisk the dry ingredients together.  
Cream the wet ingredients together until well blended.  
Add the dry to the wet ingredients and blend 2-3 minutes.
Pour into the buttered cake mold and bake at 350 degrees until baked through, approximately 70-85 minutes.
Let cool for 15 minutes, then unmold onto a cake board.  
Cool completely.

Filling 

Ingredients:
1 box white chocolate Jello instant pudding
2 cups Rich's Bettercreme

Process:

Add the cream and pudding mix together and whip to soft peaks.  (I used Bettercreme since it stands safely at room temperature for up to 5 days, but regular heavy cream works well also.  It is less sweet, so you may have to add sugar to taste.)

Frosting

Ingredients:

4 oz Champagne or sparkling wine
2 cups Rich's Bettercreme
Sugar to taste

Process:

Whip the cream to soft peaks.  
Drizzle the champagne in slowly so as not to deflate the cream.  It is very important that the champagne is flat, otherwise, the cream will curdle! You can accomplish this by stirring the champagne with a knife or spoon for a couple of minutes.  
Add sugar to taste.  Again, regular heavy whipping cream can be used, but it isn't as sweet to begin with as Rich's Bettercreme, so you will probably need more sugar.


 



When the cake is entirely cooled, split into 4 layers, fill and frost.  At this point, the whole cake can be wrapped and frozen (which is what I did.)








The Dress

A while ago, I saw a cake on Pinterest that was decorated with rose petals.  It was a simple small 6 inch round cake, but it looked luscious.  Those rose petals gave it the dreamiest appearance.  I got to thinking that it could also serve to create gorgeous ruffles for a cake. . . so I bought a dozen roses and stuck the petals onto the frosting. Of course, this works because roses are edible -- so if you choose to do this, make sure you get pesticide free ones. (Bonus: I only had to use 3, which gave me a bunch to spruce up the dining room)   





To decorate the cake with rose petals, start at the bottom and work around the cake in concentric circles.

Because rose petals naturally curve into a cup like shape, I had to create small tears at the top of each petal for it to lie flat on the frosting.

Use the larger petals at the bottom, and taper to smaller petals at the top, using the smallest petals at the center of the rose to create the last layer at the waist.




The topper goes . . . on top (obviously,) and there you have it! (And aren't these the most beautiful roses that you've ever seen?  The color is called jalah; it's exquisite -- pink at the edges and gold in the center.  Lovely. . .)












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