Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Scultped Cake Splendor
IT'S TIME FOR SCULPTED CAKES!!! And yes I do mean the whole nine yards. We used PVC pipes and everything to get the gravity defying boat. Two weeks ago was one of my favorite weeks as far as what we were making. This is the first week where we shared making a cake. We always have partners but basically they are just at the same table and not doing anything for your cake. But this week since the cake was so big, two people worked on the project. I fortunately got one of the best students in the class. He is the one that I said has an A in the class and always has the best results. So the cake is basically a steam luggage (I think that's what it is called) with a bear on it, a soccer ball, and a boat on top of the soccer ball, and a ball on the cake board. The luggage part was really easy since the cake was already baked in the shape of the luggage. Decorating it was also pretty simple and just required some airbrushing. The bear was made out of rice krispy treats which can be eaten but because they are so stiff, I personally would never eat it like that. There are few tricks to making the rice krispy treats become so stable and so you can't just use homemade rice krispies. Then the bear was covered in fondant and put together. It actually has a pvc pipe going through the body but it isn't really necessary although it can't hurt because it stabilizes the bear. Then the bear was also airbrushed to give the color more depth. Chef Scott always says that airbrushing should just be used to highlight and define objects not to be the main focus of the cake. I didn't completely understand what he meant until this week because each element doesn't really look airbrushed but seeing it
before and after really looked completely different. Adding airbrushing almost acts like the shadowing of the object and this makes it much more realistic. The soccer ball was a little tricky to cover since the shape is so awkward but with patience the fondant can be smoothed on. Then the pattern was drawn onto the ball, then places removed and then filled with black to give the soccer ball look. Again the airbrushing really added to the ball because it defined each line and also shadowed the bottom as a real soccer ball would be shadowed. We did learn quite a bit at this point because in order to keep fondant from drying out you add a bit of crisco. However, it seems that too much was added to the black segments and when the humidity got to the fondant, the black literally started to melt off and dripped all down the back. Fortunately my partner did the front of the soccer ball first, rerolled and added crisco and then did the back, only the back had too much crisco and so it didn't ruin the important side of the cake. The boat is the attached to the pvc pipe that runs through the soccer ball. We had some issues with this as well because the angle of the boat was so dramatic that the soccer ball wanted to pull off of the cake and fall over. Our chef suggested we turn the boat around so that the boat was facing inward but being that the back was cover in melted black fondant I was extremely opposed. We had to do many trials of putting dowels into the cake so that it would hold up and not fall. In the end, it was stabilized and we didn't have to sacrifice looks to make it work. This cake was really fun to do because it had so many aspects and we got to work on things over and over. We did a lot of fondanting, airbrushing, gumpaste work, and the basic cutting of cakes.
Then while we were supposed to be cleaning, I decided to waste some time and take some awesome pictures.... (you can see in the left picture where the pvc pipe was)....so worth it.