Friday, October 1, 2010
50th Birthday Cake
This past summer I was asked to make a very special birthday cake for 2 people celebrating their 50th birthdays. **A word of warning...this will be a lengthy post as this is a complicated, detailed cake that requires a lot of explanation to understand it! One side of the cake represents the husband's interests (fishing & reading), the other represents the wife's fondness for the TV show MONK. The cake top is blue buttercream symbolizing water that falls down either side of the cake. On one side (the side for the wife), the water represents the San Francisco Bay (has Golden Gate Bridge made out of hardened royal icing) and then tons of references to Monk made out of fondant and edible images. If you are not familiar with the show, it is about a germophobe police detective who works with the San Francisco PD. On the other side (the husband's side), that same water becomes a river for him to fish in. He is a prominent businessman here in town, and the scene shows him (made out of fondant and wearing his favorite "Life is Good" t-shirt) sitting on a river bank fishing and reading. His work van is made out of rice krispy treats covered in fondant with an edible image of the company logo. It is parked near the river, as if to show him taking an extended break from work to enjoy his favorite pastimes. This was perhaps the most difficult cake I've ever made. It was completely exhausting! It took about 3 days to make, including baking, sculpting fondant pieces, making the bridge pieces & drying them, and of course making tons of vanilla buttercream. It was a huge cake (wedding cake size), because there were over a hundred guests for the party. It was 3 tiers (16", 12", and 8" squares stacked 2 layers high). When all was said and done, I think I made a total of 9 double batches of buttercream. I was totally stressed out by it and worried that no one would understand the cake, even if I could pull it off. I wonder how people are able to do wedding cakes on a regular basis...my hats off to those of you who do! I was amazed that my Kitchen Aid did not give out from making that quantity of buttercream and by the time I delivered the cake all I could do was sit down and have a bottle of wine to relax :) I doubt I will ever take on a cake of the size again, but I was very honored to have been asked to make it.