As my blog name suggests, this blog will be like a learning journal. I won't go step by step on each dessert on what to do, but instead focus on the technique(s) I was learning and what I discovered while in the process of making it. I hope you will learn a thing or two, or if anything, use this as a reference and get ideas for your dessert-making. Happy decorating!

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

State of Texas Cake

11"x11" custom cut vanilla cake, buttercream frosting, coconut, white melting candy chocolate, Oreo Stix

Techniques Used-candy border

Focus-custom cutting a cake

This cake is probably one of my favorites.  It turned out exactly the way I pictured it in my head.  I have been wanting to make a custom cut cake and the opportunity presented itself in March.  Of all the states in the US, Texas has one of the best shapes for a cake, at least in my opinion.  Also, if you've ever lived in Texas, you would know that Texans have the strongest state pride as well.  I lived in Texas for a while and I saw so many different appliances shaped like Texas (like a waffle maker), houses with a Lone Star or the State of Texas on them, and even a jacuzzi in the shape of Texas!  Anyway, this was a fun cake to make, and fairly straightforward. 

I wanted to quickly explain why I decided to use these materials. First, the coconut.  As with most state flags, the Texas Flag has bold colors.  I'm sure you've noticed this with other cakes, but red frosting can have a really sour flavor, and if you've ever made red frosting, you have to use a lot of red dye otherwise it looks pink.  Can you imagine having a pink Spiderman?  Anyway, using coconut solved both of these problems.  I think I used 4-6 drops of red dye on the coconut, far less than what you would use to dye frosting.  The same amount was used for the blue coconut.  There wasn't a sour flavor either, probably because we used so little dye.  I also decided to use coconut because it would add some texture. 

Secondly, the Oreo Stix.  Although I was really looking forward to making this cake, I didn't have a lot of time to do it.  Since I used Oreo Stix and coconut, I didn't have to worry about smoothing the cake.  I'm still very slow at smoothing a cake, and this cake would've been a nightmare to smooth.  I just had to cut each stick in half and attach it to the frosting.  Simple, yet effective.

I also wanted to mention that it was really easy to make straight lines with coconut.  You just put a cutting board or something else with a straight edge where you want to end the coconut and then start dumping the coconut.  Again, this took hours off (5 min. for coconut vs. 1-2 hours for frosting), and I think it looks much better than I could've done with frosting.  The same with the Oreo Stix.  Very sharp and crisp corners, and it further outlines the shape of the cake. 

Lastly, the white melting chocolate.  I wanted something that would be the same shade of white as the white coconut.  Also, with melting chocolate, you can create your own design, so I just drew a star on a sheet of paper, put wax paper on top of the paper, and then drew the outline and filled in with the melting chocolate. 

Custom Cutting Materials-stencil of the shape you want, knife
Custom Cutting Directions-I got my stencil from the Internet(http://www.bobdavisart.com/knowledgebase/images/texas/dac10004.gif).  If you are wanting to print this one, change your settings so that it will print this picture onto four pages (my printer called it "poster").  It will then end up being 11"x11".  Cut off the excess paper before placing it on the cake.

Have the cake layered and filled before cutting the cake, but don't crumb coat.  I used two 9"x13"'s stacked on top of each other.  Place the paper or stencil on top of the cake.  Stick toothpicks or something similar into but not all the way through the stencil and cake to keep the stencil from moving.  I put my toothpicks 1/2" away from the edge, and 2" apart.  Cut the cake at a vertical (or otherwise desired) angle.

If the cake is a different size from the stencil (like above-11"x11" out of 9"x13"), you will still do the steps as above, except that you will have to choose a portion of the stencil to cut later.  With this cake, I attached the blue square at the top of the cake after cutting out the rest of Texas.  When doing this, keep the stencil on top of already cut cake as you attach the extra cake.  You can attach extra cake with frosting.  Also, don't cut the extra piece until it's attached to the main portion.  Once it's attached, then add your toothpicks and cut away!

This cake was decorated March 2011.

1 comment:

  1. Best Cake Design Ever! Can you make me one and actually ship it to the state of Texas? Oh, I miss your yummy cakes!