Fancy Nancy

8 Apr

If you know who Fancy Nancy is, this blog post is for you. πŸ™‚ This week all of the first graders at my school went on a field trip to see a Fancy Nancy play. They loved it, and a co-worker of mine encouraged me to bring a cake for the occasion. πŸ™‚ If you don’t know who she is, she is a book character who loves to do everything the fancy way. They are actually really cute books. Her favorite color is fuchsia (she explains that this is “fancy” for purple). She likes to pick out elaborate ensembles for school (fancy for outfits), and she likes to bake delectable cupcakes (fancy for yummy). Here’s what she looks like.

Β As a teacher, I love them. The kids start using all of these “fancy” words in their conversations because they want to be like Nancy….and they don’t even realize they are enriching their vocabulary. Ha! Caught ya, kiddos. πŸ™‚ I decided that to make the cake truly stupendous (her favorite work for great), it needed to have a special design on the inside as well as the outside. So, I got out my checkerboard cake pan set. It’s a little confusing to explain how this works, but I’ll try…

I mixed together two batches of cake. Both were vanilla flavored, but I left one batch the normal yellow color and tinted the other batch pink with food coloring. This set of pans comes with a ring that you place into each pan before you pour the batter. It divides the cake into rings, in a pattern like the Target logo. For two of the layers, I poured my pink batter into the outer circle, the yellow batter into the middle circle, and then the pink batter again for the inside circle. For the other layer, I started with yellow on the outside, and pink in the middle. I think it would make slightly more sense with pictures. πŸ™‚

Once the layers are alternately stacked together, the rings create the checkerboard pattern on the inside. Of course then I needed to finish icing the sides and top to create a blank canvas for my masterpiece. πŸ™‚

I decided to try a new technique for this cake. It’s called “Frozen Buttercream Transfer.” You start by printing out a picture of whatever design you want on the cake.

I taped this down to a flat surface, and then taped down some parchment paper on top of it. Then, I traced the picture onto the parchment paper using buttercream icing and piping bags. You have to pipe each color of icing on top of each other, starting with the outline.

Once I’d traced over all the details, I put this into the freezer for about two hours. Once it was very firm, I took it out and flipped it over onto the top of my cake. It ends up being a mirror image of the picture that was traced. Then I *carefully* peeled off the parchment paper. I was very nervous about this part, especially since this was the first time I’d tried this technique. It took over 30 minutes to pipeΒ little Nancy (including time to mix the colors) and I didn’t want it to go to waste! I was very relieved when I saw that the picture was still in tact. πŸ™‚ I added one of her favorite, fancy phrases (Ooh La La!). As Nancy explains in her books, everything sounds more fancy in French. πŸ™‚ And of course, it needed a pink border. And voila! Fancy Nancy.

My students loved it. That half an hour spent tracing all of her little ruffles on her dress was worth it when I saw their faces. πŸ™‚ And I was happy with how the inside looked when it was sliced. Fancy indeed!

Up Next: Really not sure yet? Any requests?

Random Thought of the Day: Special K, Vanilla and Almonds flavor. I love it. Try it. That’s all. πŸ™‚

The End.

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2 Responses to “Fancy Nancy”

  1. Jessica Llanes April 10, 2011 at 2:59 pm #

    This is so cool! Awesome job on the transfer

  2. Mom April 10, 2011 at 7:06 pm #

    Fancy Nancy sounds like a neat character! I am sure the kids loved having such a special treat.

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