I have a problem….

23 Jul

…I tend to watch lots of cake shows on TV and then think that I can make all kinds of amazing cakes that look like theirs. I forget that I don’t have as much training, experience, and equipment that they do. I see some of the techniques that they use and think…..”Oh! I can do that!” I also see lots of fantastic cakes on my favorite website, cakecentral.com. And again, I think that I can make my very own cake that looks just like the ones I see. Well…..sometimes I attempt to replicate their fabulous creations and my cakes don’t quite turn out the way that I had envisioned.

So….today, I’m going to show you my latest attempt to replicate a cake that I saw on cakecentral.com. The front even ended up looking quite nice. 🙂 The back of the cake…..well…..we won’t go there. I’ll just say that there was one rather large tear in the fondant, so it became obvious very quickly that I would have to make that the back side. 🙂 Overall, it was a good learning experience. I used a few techniques that I liked and I thought were successful, and I realized which of the techniques I still need to practice more. LOTS more. 🙂

So come along with me on a journey to make a 3-D Diet Coke Can cake. 🙂 Those of you who know me well already know that it’s my favorite drink. And you also know that decorating cake is my favorite hobby. So….it just made sense to me to put the two together. Except that it didn’t really make sense to turn a cake into something that has the word “diet” on it, but that’s ok. 🙂 Here’s how it all worked, but keep in mind that you’re seeing the “good” side of the cake. I’m not going to post any pictures of the back of the cake because it was not pretty.

First, I stacked 4 layers of cake (each one was a 6″ round). I made these layers with batter that I had left over from other cakes, so there are 2 layers of yellow and 2 layers of strawberry. But I kind of liked that….it ended up being 1 cake with 2 different flavors.

The next step was to carve the top just a little. I don’t really have experience with carving, so I didn’t want to try to do too much and mess it up. But I wanted to carve just a little off the top to make the top of the can look realistic.

The next step was to “crumb coat” it, or “dirty ice” the cake. Which basically means that I iced the cake with buttercream so that I could later cover it with fondant. Since this layer of icing won’t be showing on the final cake, it’s ok if there are a few crumbs in the icing. So it can look a little “dirty.” Since this was a pretty tall cake, I had to use a LOT of icing to get it all covered. But there was still a little buttercream leftover so that I could lick the bowl. 😉 You can’t ever skip that step. Licking the icing bowl is *crucial* to cake decorating. 🙂

Now it’s time for the fondant. I colored the fondant grey to match the color of a Diet Coke can. I accidentally added a little too much black food coloring though, so it was a darker shade than what I was going for. But…..once you add in the color you can’t really take it back out. So I had to settle. Next time, I’ll mix in the coloring in smaller amounts so I don’t get it too dark. This color actually made me think of an elephant, especially the back of the cake where it was all wrinkled. Too bad I wasn’t trying to make an elephant; it would have been perfect. 😉

Next I rolled out some fondant and cut out a shape for the pop tab to go on top of the can. This was actually one of my favorite parts. I think it turned out looking pretty realistic, so it added a nice detail. Not that I’m bragging or anything. 😛

At this point I painted the fondant with “silver luster dust.” It’s an edible, sparkly dust that gives the cake a shiny appearance. I don’t think the pictures do the shine justice. In real life, the cake had a very nice metallic look. Just what I was hoping for! I also added the pop tab and a rim to the top of the can, and started piping on the logo.

After that, all I had left to do was to finish piping the logo and paint luster dust on the details that I’d added on top. Besides the pop tab, the logo was my favorite part. I think it came out really well. It made me smile. 🙂 And of course, it made me want to drink a Diet Coke. 🙂 Here are 2 shots of the finished cake.

So….if/when I make this kind of cake again, I know of a few things that I would do the same and a few things that I would do differently. I was a little disappointed that the cake didn’t look like the masterpieces on cakecentral.com…….but overall I think I can count it as a good learning experience. And of course…..even though the back of the cake looked ridiculous, it still tasted good. 🙂

Random Thought for the Day: The Braves are leading their division by 7 games. This makes me very happy 🙂 Oh and, have a fantastic weekend.

The End. 🙂

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2 Responses to “I have a problem….”

  1. Jessica Llanes July 25, 2010 at 7:08 pm #

    Almost makes me want to drink a diet coke, but I think I’ll have a diet mountain dew instead. BUT, I would like to have a piece of diet coke cake with my diet mountain dew = )

  2. Vicki Chastain July 28, 2010 at 1:21 am #

    I think the cakes are wonderful Jenn!!!

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