Saturday, January 16, 2010

Portfolio: Bug Birthday Cakes

Howdy folks!

Before the holidays got swingin', I was asked to make some smash cakes for a set of fraternal twins who were turning one!  I didn't post about them then since I forgot to take my camera and had to use my phone to take the picture of the cakes and I FINALLY uploaded them this week  (I know, little Ms. Tech Geek here didn't know how to upload photos from a phone!).

The birthday mom was doing a party theme based on a book that featured a ladybug and a bumblebee, so the cakes I made coordinated with the theme.  It was a small family only gathering, so she didn't want anything too large.

The bodies were made using a dome shaped pan and the heads are cupcakes.  The bumblebee's wings are made from cardstock.  The cake was vanilla butter cake with standard American buttercream.

I achieved the look of these cakes by using cupcakes and a specialty pan that I found the week before at All in One Bake Shop.  I've said it once, and I'll say it again, I don't normally like to use specialty pans because they're one hit wonders; you can only usually them for one character or design.  There are some though, that a baker should get and have in their personal stock for specialty cakes.  This dome shaped pan is perfect because it can be used to create many different things.

This dome pan is actually about 5" diameter; that's a regular teaspoon next to it for scale.  And it's a true dome, so you have to be careful about balancing it in the oven or you might have some spillage in the oven!

Because I only bought one pan (I had to make sure it would work), I had to bake and complete each cake separately which increased the amount of time I spent on baking.  But it was worth it as I could have never achieved such a perfect dome by carving.  Sometimes a specialty pan is worth the cost and cupboard space just to save some time and a little bit of frustration!

In the end, I think it was worth the $6 I spent on the pan as it made these smash cakes a breeze.  And the mom was thrilled with the cakes as were the twins' older brothers!

Happy Baking,

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