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Thursday, January 3, 2013

"Dashing through the....No"

I haven't had the opportunity to make many cakes lately, so for my family's Christmas celebration I decided to bring a cake. And no ordinary cake, but Tardar Sauce the internet sensation Frumpy Kitty Cake:)

To start I printed off a picture of Tard the approximate size I wanted, and got a hunka hunka RKT. I wanted to be able to work in advance because of my work schedule so I decided to make the kitty himself out of RKT and place him on a cake. Since it was for Christmas I decided on a grumpy santa coming out of the chimney.
Once I carved out a shape that sort of resembled the grumpy cat's torso I gouged out some eyeholes and added some modeling chocolate details:

Then I covered it all with a thin layer of modeling chocolate to get a smooth surface:

Na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, na, Bat Kitty"
While doing the eyeballs I had an idea for placing them. No matter how careful I am I always manage to distort my spheres when placing them, so I used the right size measuring spoon (dusted with a little cornstarch) to press them in place with no distortion!

Building up more layers with modeling chocolate: (the eyes I did with gumpaste so I could paint them better later)
Then the tricky part, I suck at covering weird shapes with fondant (who am I kidding I suck at normal cake shapes too- just have to know how to hide things:): I kept some plastic wrap over it while I smoothed to keep it from drying out to soon, looks kind of spooky:
Starting to see the details underneath:
Using gumpaste tools to further refine the features:

Added a gumpaste nose:

At this point I added an ear made of gumpaste, and stuffed it with wadded waxed paper until it was dry.

Then it was time for the chimney, coconut cake with chocolate ganache, looks a little lumpy, but I wasn't concerned with perfect edges for this one as it was going to be covered with textured "bricks" anyway:
For the bricks I used a cereal box cardboard template for the size, and then textured it with a grill scrubber:
Stuck to the ganache with a bit of water:
I used some brown and black food color to "age" my bricks, this was the first of several layers:

 It was the same sort of thing for the top grey bricks: marbled black modeling chocolate with white fondant, textured it with a stiff paintbrush:

 Then black food color for age; I could have sworn I took a picture of my mortaring, but I must not have. I tried a few ideas then finally settled on melted white chocolate textured with one of those crappy little plastic stiff paintbrushes, it set-up as you went, and started to powder like real mortar:

Now that the chimney was done I started painting Tard. To start I covered his eyes in painter's tape so I wouldn't over-airbrush onto them:
Layering browns and blacks, and pink for the nose and mouth area:
Pretty blue eyes:
Then I started the hand-painted details for fur and eyes:
Threw on a Santa hat of modeling chocolate:

I added some straws in the cake to support the weight of the RKT:

I was going to use fondant regularly for the snow, but on a whim I decided to use the microplane grater, with great results, For added snowy sparkle I sprinkled with a little disco dust on top, though it doesn't show in the photos

And voila! Grumpy Santa Kitty

Football Jersey Cake

Now I will admit I am not much of  a sports fan (except for hockey, and even then I just like the fighting). Oh sure I like going to sporting events, because they serve beer, but the actual games and players, meh. I don't hate it, I just could care less. Unless there is taco dip being served, then I will go to whatever football/baseball/curling viewing party you have. Anyway, this rambling preceeds me talking about a cake I did a month or two ago of a Packer jersey. I started off with a quarter sheet, which I filled and stacked.
Because I didn't want the hassle of making and cutting extra cake, I decided to go with rice cereal treats for the collar and sleeves. You can't really tell in the picture, but one thing I made sure to do was taper the ends of the sleeves, which I prefer to the cakes where every element is at the same height/level. Any contrast , to me, adds a little more character to the cake

Then I covered everything in a white chocolate ganache.
The sleeves and collar were still a little too bumpy because of the RKT, so I added a thin layer of modeling chocolate over those areas so the final fondant layer would be nice and smooth.
Then I covered the entire thing with fondant, using gumpaste tools to indent lines for the hems. I also ran a pastry stitching wheel in the indents to make it look a little bit like sewn hems.
The first layer of green airbrush.
And another.
Adding some brown for more depth:

Then I made templates for the numbers using cereal boxes (I like to use them printed side down as they are glossy and mostly non-stick).
I cut them out of the gumpaste, then moved them carefully to the Wilton cake lifter, and let them sit a few minutes so they would be less likely to move/distort:
I used rulers laid out to make sure I was centering the numbers correctly-laying the paper templates I had made to get the positioning right. When doing a deceptively simple cake like this, it is even more important to get everything as close to perfect as you can:
I used my x-acto to score around the paper as a guide for when I would lay the actual gumpaste on:
Same sort of deal for the name- I pieced together the name I was using and used a paper printout to get the right spacing:
Then I added stripes on the neck and sleeves, hand-painted the yellow, then added some layers of brown airbrush for depth:
Adding more darks/shadows with brown and black airbrush color:

And there you go:)