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Help needed to make a ridiculously ambitious halloween/birthday cake please.

(16 Posts)
lollilou Thu 02-Oct-14 15:48:50

It's my birthday at the end of October(one that ends in an 0) I am planning a big birthday party and I would like to make my cake.
Just one small problem I have never attempted something as ambitious as this before!
I would like to make a mix of this one, and this one.
I have loads of technical questions and am appealing to you lovely ladies.smile
So here are a few,
How long before the date of eating,31st Oct can I make the sponge? Both tiers will be sponge as all the family dislike fruit.
I would like thin layers of sponge coloured black, red and maybe purple, like this,
Sandwiched with white buttercream. How do I get the colours right?
Is buttercream the best filling to use?
I'll update with pics and no doubt disasters I go!
I did post this in Chat and got lot's of replies but was advised to move it to here.

LizzieMint Sun 05-Oct-14 20:59:21

How long before do you need to make it? My normal sponge cake recipe (just standard viccie sponge) I usually bake on a tuesday for a Saturday. If you need longer, you can make a madeira cake recipe, they are good for up to 2 weeks. It depends how much time each day you have to decorate really! I'd expect a cake like that to take 8-10 hours to decorate professionally.
For baking/colouring the sponge, use paste colours, and more than you think you need as they tend to bake paler. Buttercream will be fine for the filling, just whip it for ages (at least 10 minutes) to get it nice and white.
I'm assuming you will be covering with sugarpaste?
Have you stacked a cake before? Are you planning on doing wonky tiers?
Let me know if you have any other questions, I'll try and help!

thaliablogs Mon 06-Oct-14 22:06:48

You can make the sponge when you like if you've got a freezer. Frozen layers also much easier to trim and ice. Just wrap well in couple of layers of cling film and foil.

lollilou Fri 10-Oct-14 22:21:48

Thank you for your replies.
I have never made a cake like this before! I need it to be done for the 31st Oct a Friday so how long will it take do you think? 8 to 10 hours to decorate? Can you break that down for me? Will I need to crumb frost it (is that the right term? Can you tell I've been watching youtube videos!)
I have ready made fondant to cover. I'm thinking 2 tiers and not wonky as I'm worried about the angles.
If I freeze the cakes can I ice them frozen or thaw?
I'm sure I will have many more questions as it gets closer so thanks again.

LizzieMint Sat 11-Oct-14 17:20:03

You will need to crumb coat otherwise your fondant will be lumpy. There are lots of videos on YouTube showing how to crumb coat, you will need a spatula or dough scraper to get a smooth line.
You can crumb coat a frozen cake but I think if you then cover with fondant while it's frozen you will probably get loads of air bubbles. Best to wait until it's thawed. Once it's thawed and covered, the cake should be good for a good week though, so there's no rush.
If you are doing a two tier, you need to make sure the cakes are level, and have a cake board in between and dowels in the bottom cake, otherwise you risk a collapse!

lollilou Sun 12-Oct-14 12:59:51

Thank you.
Well I can draw the cake I want but can I make it! smile

lollilou Sun 12-Oct-14 13:00:06

Thank you.
Well I can draw the cake I want but can I make it! smile

PenelopeGarciasCrazyHair Sun 12-Oct-14 13:12:33

I've just started making a few bigs cakes. Things I've learned from expert friends along the way:

I wrap the cake in cling film when it comes out of the oven to keep the steam in and then freeze.

It's easier to crumb coat while still frozen and then leave to defrost before adding fondant (or if you put fondant on and then defrost, make a small hole for condensation to escape. Don't add decoration, especially anything which might colour-run, until defrosted).

Get some thin cake boards the right size for each layer and some plastic dowels it support them. The cake itself isn't supposed to support the layer above.

White chocolate ganache makes a tasty alternative to buttercream and although it takes a bit of getting used to, once you know what you're doing with it (& providing you have fridge space to chill it between layers) it can give a much smoother finish under the fondant than you get with buttercream.

Your drawing looks fab, I hope it turns out well for you.

PenelopeGarciasCrazyHair Sun 12-Oct-14 13:13:57

Btw, you're obviously arty and creative to be able to envisage and draw your cake, so I'm sure you'll be fine making it come to life.

CurlsLDN Sun 12-Oct-14 15:26:59

Cool cake! My birthdays on the 30th Oct, can I borrow it? ;)

I made my wedding cake last year. Here's the timings I used...
Couple of weeks in advance - baked the tiers, cooled them, sliced them (for the internal layers) wrapped in cling film and froze

Tues - took out of freezer
Weds - filled with buttercream and crumb coated
Thurs - fondant iced and constructed the cake (use plastic dowels as a pp said, you can cut them to size with a kitchen knife)
Left for a few hours then decorated with gold cake paint
Fri - took to venue and left in fridge
Sat - wedding!

I took plenty of time, so that each layer had time to cool/dry/set and I didn't get in a tiz! Sure some of these steps could be sped up, but there's nothing worse than trying to be creative when you're stressed.

lollilou Thu 16-Oct-14 18:43:53

So I have all the ingredients and itching to get on with it but no room in the freezer at the moment.
Quick question once the cakes are made can I slice the top and turn them upside down to ice? I was thinking that would give me a really flat top and neater edges.

LizzieMint Fri 17-Oct-14 09:17:53

Yes, that's what I always do.

LizzieMint Tue 04-Nov-14 20:22:34

lollilou, how did the cake go?

lollilou Wed 12-Nov-14 20:35:52

It went much better than expected. Had a bit of a wobble halfway through but I was pleased in the end. Tasted ok too even with alot of food colouring!
Added some photos and yes that's me cutting it!
Thanks for your help.

LizzieMint Wed 12-Nov-14 22:36:51

That looks fabulous! And you match your cake! grin

FlorenceMattell Fri 14-Nov-14 17:31:44

Happy Birthday! Your cake looks fab.

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