Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Ladybug Birthday Cake

My little gal turned one in April, and we opted for a "Laineybug" theme. Looking around the interweb for inspiration, I was pretty surprised to see how popular ladybug parties are this year. I got the idea for this cake from this photo.

This is my first fondant covered cake, mostly because I'm not a huge fan of the taste of fondant. Also, everything I've read over the years indicates that it's not the easiest thing to use. But I really wanted the smooth finish for this cake, so I didn't have any other options.

As if using fondant for the first time wasn't a big enough challenge, I also decided to make my own! Foolish, I know, but luckily it turned out alright. The recipe I used was a mixture of melted marshmallows, icing sugar and water, with gel food colouring added.

To make the black spots, I rolled out fondant and used cookie cutters to get the round shape. I also used a heart-shaped cookie cutter for the antennae. The antennae are held in place with bamboo skewers that I painted black with edible food pens.

The cake itself was a yummy chocolate, with whipped vanilla buttercream. This is my all-time favourite frosting as it is very light and so tasty. I used the frosting to fill between the two layers of cake, and to frost the whole cake so the fondant would adhere easily.

Overall, my first experience with fondant was favourable enough for me to want to try it again. I achieved a relatively smooth appearance, and was pretty happy with the result. But I found this fondant even more sickeningly sweet than the other stuff I've tried. Needless to say, I just pulled it all off and ate  the cake and frosting underneath. Making homemade fondant is a lot of work, so I think I'll save myself the time and just buy it next time.

The most important thing was that we had a good time and my little girl had fun. I hope to make many more birthday cakes for her, and celebrate together!

Happy Birthday, Lainey!

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