Another request for a cake to look like a real object! Only this time, it’s a fish!!
As I wasn’t about to bring in a real live fish as my model, a print out of a salmon will have to do! I ‘scale’ (no pun intended – lol) the print out of the fish to the size I want to do the cake. I then use this as my template to cut out layers of cake from a full sized sheet cake.
After stacking the cake and giving it a crumb coat with buttercream I put it in the fridge to let it set. The crumb coat is to keep the cake crumbs from mixing in with my final buttercream layer. Once this thin layer of buttercream is cold I can finish masking the cake in buttercream. It goes back in the fridge to set, once again.
For this particular cake, I choose to cover it in modelling chocolate instead of fondant. I did this because I like the way modelling chocolate blends together and can be textured. This helps when I add the fins and tail, also made from modelling chocolate and when I create the fish scales using the back end of a piping tip.
I started with plain ivory modelling chocolate as the fish has a sort of gradient colouration from the top to the bottom and I can easily achieve this by using edible coloured dusts.
Oh! Did I foget to mention that this cake was for Canada’s very own Levi Bent-Lee?!! Happy Birthday Levi! In addition to being surprised with this cake for his birthday, Levi is also a client our ours having ordered a birthday cake for his girlfriend, Mercedes (aka DJ Unimerce).
A wearable cake? Not quite, but it almost looks like it!
We tend to get a lot of requests to recreate people’s favourite things in cake. DKO (aka Snow) loves his Clark’s original shoes so much that he recently bought 6 pairs! As his birthday is in late October, which makes him a scorpio, his wife requested that we add an edible scorpion figure to the cake as well.
When making a cake to look like a real life object we like to have the real thing as a model, when we can. This helps us to get the shape and details as close as possible. This particular cake was 3 days in the making but the time-lapse video reduces all that work into just a few minutes! I wish we really could work that quickly!!
With this cake I was lucky enough to have the real shoe as my model.
I first started by taking a photograph of both the sole and side profile to have as guides.
I then used the sole print out as a template to start cutting out and stacking each shoe from slab cake. Once stacked, they set in the fridge for about an hour to make the cake more firm. I then carved a more exact shape and did a rough masking using swiss meringue buttercream. They went back into the fridge to set the buttercream and then I refined the shape using a small offset pallet knife and my hands.
After custom colouring the fondant to the right colour I covered the front of the shoe, including the tongue, first and then wrapped a larger piece around the sides and back. The next step is to trim the top edge with darker brown modelling chocolate and the front with the same tan fondant. To get the appearance of stitching I used a small #1 piping tip to indent small holes around the front then pipe the “stitch” marks from hole to hole with royal icing.
I used the tan fondant mixed with some xylose powder (for more structure) for the shoe laces. I rolled it through my pasta press and used the linguini setting to cut it into even thin strips.
For the sole, I secured a strip of ivory modelling chocolate around the base of each shoe, used a brand new, clean kitchen sponge to give it texture then dusted it with brown, edible petal dust to give it a more realistic look.
The scorpion is then sculpted out of modelling chocolate with the legs being made over thin wire for support.
Both shoes are placed on the cake base over plastic straw dowels for support to ensure that they do not sink into the cake.
We have had the pleasure of creating every birthday cake for DKO (aka Snow) for the past 6 years and were lucky enough to have done his wedding and anniversary cakes as well as cakes for his in-laws and wife. Their entire family is great to work with and we always look forward to what the next creation might be!