A Whimsical Birthday Cake

Goooood morning everyone! Today I have for you a cake that I actually made last month but kept all to myself until now. Greedy, I know. 😈

In all seriousness, I actually made this cake for my neighbor’s mother’s birthday, and since I was in Austin that weekend I didn’t even get to taste it! I heard it was a hit though. As a matter of fact, I was told it was the best cake I ever made. πŸ˜‹ 

(Don’t mind me, I figured out how to add emojis to my blog posts today…)

I ran into a couple of issues when decorating this cake, so I thought I’d go ahead and explain what went wrong and how I covered it up like a badass. Half of cake decorating is fixing your mistakes, amirite? Check out this beauty!

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I typically skip this part and go straight to the decorating, but the filling of this cake looked so good that I had to share. I started out by soaking each layer of my favorite chocolate cake in some deliciously juicy strawberry puree. 

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Then I smothered it with some chocolate ganache that I let thicken up on my counter.

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…before adding some ripe, fresh strawberry slices that I sweetened with some sugar.

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Once all four layers were stacked, I gave it a nice, thin crumb coat with some pale pink swiss meringue buttercream.

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Voila. Then I popped the cake in the fridge for a bit to chill.

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My plan was to add varying shades of gray in a sort of watercolor design, but it looked awful so I scraped it all off and went with splotches of white and purple instead. Here is the only surviving pic:

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This was also right after I got my awesome nifty fifty Americolor kit, so I was dying to try the white! I added some to my freshly made white chocolate ganache and stirred it up. Hmmm, still yellow. So I added more….and still yellow. And so I added even more, and it was all yellow. Well, shit. 

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I poured my ganache on the cake anyway, despite “mother of pearl” color.

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Then I sprinkled on some crushed up freeze dried strawberries in a crescent moon shape on the top. And look, my ganache finally decided it wanted to be white.

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I then moved on to making some pretty white chocolate decorations. Don’t worry, there is wax paper on top of my table. 

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I made quite a few of them, and sprinkled more of those crushed freeze dried strawberries on one. Sexy.

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Then I whipped out my Russian piping tips. Putin approved. See, I told you I’d use them more than once! I haven’t studied them enough to know the difference between the patterns, so I just picked out a couple and hoped for the best.

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And since I wanted my flowers to be two-toned, I smeared one color around the inside of the bag, 

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then filled the rest with another color.

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Then I piped a bunch of flowers on some wax paper so that I could try and figure out how tall I wanted each flower to be and how much pressure I needed to apply to make them look decent. This is actually a great tip, so you should go ahead and write it down. 😜 Once I was done I popped them in the freezer to firm up, that way I could pick my favorites rather than potentially screwing up when trying to pipe them on the cake.

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I did the same thing with some pink flowers. This particular tip was no bueno so there weren’t too many flowers that I felt were worth keeping.

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Back to the cake…guess who poured on her ganache too early? I didn’t want a pretty crescent moon anyway! πŸ™ 

You have to make the best of things in this situation, so it’s important to just keep on trucking

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So, I went ahead and placed my white chocolate decorations. It helps to use a knife and cut into the top of cake a bit so that you can stick the chocolate right in there. Then pipe some buttercream around it reinforce it.

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Like so.

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Then I added some of those frozen flowers to the top, as well as some tiny meringues and some cute purple buttercream blobs using a star tip.

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As you can see from this picture, I continued those little buttercream blobs down the cake where the freeze dried strawberries melted down. YOU GOTTA OWN IT.

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The last thing I did was use that same piping bag to add a little border to the bottom of the cake. 

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BUT, I needed a cake topper. Did you know that greeting cards are two for a dollar at the dollar store? I found this one with some cupcakes on it and I thought it was so fitting. I drew a circle around the part I wanted and cut it out using  scissors. Then I secured it to a toothpick using some tape and plopped it in the cake.

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I really think it gave it that extra je ne sais quoi. Non? Oui? 

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At the absolute last second I also tossed on a few gold sugar pearls. I just can’t stop…I think I’m done and then I add something else. Send help. But really, this was the end, and I thought the final result was pretty spectacular.

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So, I hope you enjoyed following me along on this journey. But most of all, I hope you feel inspired! 

Until next time <3

Summary
A Whimsical Birthday Cake
Article Name
A Whimsical Birthday Cake
Description
Step by step instructions on how to make this gorgeous drip cake for your next birthday celebration, complete with chocolate sails!
Author
Publisher Name
Amanda Learns to Bake

4 thoughts on “A Whimsical Birthday Cake

  1. Very inspiring cake indeed! Those colours are so sweet together and the decorations all complement each other. I love how you went with the flow when the cake design up ‘n’ changed on you – you done gon’ owned it πŸ˜€ and emoticons definitely help with blog writing πŸ˜‰ I hope your neighbours know how lucky they are to have a generous cake maker in the vicinity.

    1. Haha you should have seen my face when I opened the freezer and realized the ganache/dried strawberries didn’t stay put. After all of these drip cakes I still find that I sometimes put the drip on too early or too late. I kinda liked the effect of this one though. From far away it looked the crumbled up freeze dried strawberries looked like little flowers, like the whole cake was wrapped in a little floral blanket. I ain’t even mad!

  2. I’ve been known to rush a step or two when it comes to decorating, so I know how you felt with the ganache ! There’s always a way to fix a cake mistake though πŸ˜‰ Plus, you can’t go wrong with more buttercream and sprinkles, ah !

    1. Haha, I couldn’t agree more! I’ve made so many drip cakes yet I always forget to take my own advice and do a practice drip down the side of a vertical surface. Oh well. Thank you so much for commenting. I’m excited to check out your cakes!

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