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.

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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.

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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,
Kelly

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