Sunday, May 13, 2012

Fishy Birthday

It's MoMo's birthday! was. Back in April. It may have taken me until Mother's Day to post about it, but her birthday cake was on time!
Sure, I could have settled and bought a pre-made monstrosity from the grocery store...who am I kidding? Buying a cake would probably cause me to burst into flames, and I don't want to risk that. Besides, to me, store-bought birthday cakes always tend to look something like this:
I don't even want to know
Instead of questionably themed, chemically altered baked goods, I read a little on shaped cakes. Inspired by this cake from Martha Stewart magazine, I decided to take the plunge. MoMo loves the ocean, spends her summers on the beach, and has Finding Nemo practically memorized. I knew she'd get a kick out of a fish cake.
It was very do-able. There was no fondant rolling or finicky layer-stacking. Just a 13x9 yellow cake and a small mountain of lemon buttercream.
My fishy isn't perfect, but MoMo loved him. She said it was the best birthday cake she'd ever had. Not bad for my first try!
I reduced the size of the pattern pieces so they'd all fit on one 13x9 cake. The original instructions called for two cakes, and I thought that was too much. I fastened the pieces down with toothpicks so they wouldn't shift as I cut them out with a paring knife.
Woo! I think we all know those scraps were put to good use ;]
Fit the pieces like a tasty puzzle and use light blue buttercream to hold together
Before you dye the buttercream blue, put 1/8 c aside and dye it red for the mouth.
Crumb coat
I refrigerated the cake between the crumb coat and the second layer of icing to keep the buttercream from getting unruly.
Clean, neater fin details
Darken the remaining icing and pipe scales using a petal icing tip
Add a squiggly smile!
It's time for your close-up! The camera loves you!
I covered the pan with blue Mardi Gras beads and sprinkled paper spirals over the top. Each spiral had a 'remember when' line on it. It was so fun watching MoMo unfurl each spiral and laugh.

Happy birthday MoMo! Just keep swimming!
Until next time!

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