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Daughter's Birthday Cake

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Ok, so my daughter's birthday isn't until November but I'm trying to get this cake planned out well in advance. She will be 8 years old, and she's nuts over Monster High dolls. She wants an entire party dedicated to the Monster High theme. She has requested that I make her a Draculaura cake, red velvet flavored. I have decided to use my Wonder Cake mold to make the cake, but the decorating is where I have very many questions.

I consider myself a very, very amateur cake decorator (haven't taken any classes and all my inspiration is from shows like Cake Boss).

Now for my questions:
1. Which Red Velvet recipe will taste the best and stand up the best to the doll cake design?
(As a note, I only use recipes that have natural ingredients ... I don't use any shortening of any kind.)

2. I have heard that Swiss Meringue Buttercream works best with fondant, will this work well and taste well with Red Velvet?

3. For the "dress" design, I want to use fondant and drape it on to give the look of a flowing ballgown. I found a video online that shows how to create fondant swags and drapes by putting the fondant on in pieces instead of one large piece. Here is the video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8cGUQcikzEY&feature=player_embedded

Will the fondant adhere to the cake with just the buttercream? Also, is it necessary to add the gumpaste? I make my own fondant out of marshmallows because I'm quite picky about certain ingredients. I've never worked with gumpaste, so I'm hesitant about something unfamiliar. Plus most of the gumpaste recipes I've looked at uses ingredients I don't like using. I saw this one online:
http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20080906001555AAfNYFT

And I wonder if mixing it with my fondant will allow me to do the draped design like I want?


4. I want to give the cake a sparkly kind of look like I saw here
http://cakecentral.com/gallery/2267969/monster-high-draculaura-1600-dress-cake

I want to use Wilton Pearl Dust, but I'm not sure if I should apply it wet (pearl dust mixed with a little vodka or lemon extract) or dry to achieve this kind of sparkly look. Any thoughts?
post #2 of 5
Well, I'll take a stab at a few of your questions. I don't care for red velvet cake, so I'm afraid I don't have a recipe, but I did find this interesting blog where someone did a taste test on 8 different recipes (it might help you decide): http://thebakemore.blogspot.com/2009/11/ultimate-red-velvet-cake-taste-off-8.html

As for icing, I only use IMBC or SMBC. These days I've been doing Swiss Meringue because it's easier. Any buttercream will work well under fondant, and should be great with red velvet cake, though either cream cheese icing or a pastry cream based buttercream is traditional. I haven't used cream cheese icing under fondant though. It stays too soft, even fully chilled, so I think it would be tough do.

There is absolutely no need to use gumpaste mixed in. The fondant will firm up just fine on its own, and will have a much better texture for those that eat it.

The dust on the cake you linked to looks to be sparkle dust rather than luster dust. Look at the different types of dusts on Global Sugar Art: http://www.globalsugarart.com/cat.php?cid=682&s=&name=Petal,%20Pearl,%20Luster%20Dusts

If you mix luster dust will alcohol, you can use it as a paint. It will be opaque (the fondant won't show through when you paint it on). If you brush it on dry, then it will add a sheen/sparkle with the fondant being the primary color.

Hope this helps some. There are much more experiences cake artists here than I am, so I'm sure someone else will jump in. Good luck!
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much for these tips. I am so excited to try them out! I did have one more question. I plan on using a black fondant for the dress. I usually achieve the best results with black food coloring when I add it to a chocolate base. Will a chocolate fondant taste too weird with red velvet cake? I don't want to use tons of black food color to get the look I want, so any other suggestions aside from using a chocolate based fondant would be appreciated.
post #4 of 5
Red velvet cake usually has a small amount of cocoa powder in it, so I don't think chocolate fondant will taste weird with it. However, I exclusively order black fondant now when I need black. It's so much better than trying to get a true black color, and won't get sticky from all that food coloring. Fondarific sells 8oz containers, and the other brands generally have as low as 2 lb. containers. Also, we have a "home cake decorators" store in Seattle that will sell you however much you want. She buys big tubs and breaks them down into 1 lb. bags.

Just a thought...you might see if anyone in your area would be willing to sell you a small amount, or see if anyone has 2 lb tubs available.
post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Hey thanks again for the info. This cake I think will be the best my daughter's had ... LOL I may get the "Coolest Mom In The World" award icon_biggrin.gif
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