A Mario and Zelda Themed Wedding Cake

There is no denying that this was a very exciting cake to be asked to do – a wedding cake themed around Mario and Zelda. And all in chocolate, with ganache, the best icing to work with. And for an extra step, a separate gluten free cake, to be as much a part of the wedding as the main cake. It is safe to say this took a lot of time, consisting of the research before hand (including playing the Wii U a lot), the time spent making the topper and decorations, as well as the time them spent making the actual cake – but the reactions made it completely worthwhile, as ever!

The topper was different to the usual bride and groom, in that they were in karts from Mario Kart. This also meant working on a smaller scale too. I have a work tray for doing modelling work, so set that up with the tools and pastes needed, and then got busy.

Here is a slightly disturbing shot of a headless bride and groom:

Headless couple

Followed by a much better looking completed couple:

Finished couple

And a ‘Just Married’ sign to go over them:

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It was a pretty wonderful day when it was finished, and looked as I had imagined!

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Here are some of the limited pictures of the making of the other bits that went on to the cake – apologies that some of them are from screen shots of Snapchats.

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There were a few other pre made bits, which missed having their pictures taken, sunch as the Rainbow Road fences, and Moo Moo Meadows grass. Having them made in advance meant that putting it all together did not take too long.

That cake its self was all chocolate sponge,the different tiers filled with coffee, caramel and chocolate buttercream. In a trial run, i used a jar of caramel sauce (Tescos Finest) added to my usual buttercream, which was very tasty. However, then I could not find a new jar when I needed it, so used this recipe instead from John Whaite. This is up there as a contender for the tastiest thing I have ever made, so I suggest everyone goes forth and tries it too – especially if you missed out at the wedding.

Figuring out the road running up the side of the cake took some time, and then once it came time to make the cake, I did it completely differently too. Each cake had a rice crispy add-on to the side to make the road up to the next tier. All the cakes were covered in ganache, then sugarpasted. The bottom tier was also air brushed, where as the top two were covered with green sugarpaste.

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Here it is in location, at The Golden Lion hotel in Stirling.

 rob and aly wedding cake

A gluten free wedding cake was also part of the order, to be shaped as a Tetris brick. Again, this was covered in ganache (having been filled half with chocolate buttercream, and half with white chocolate buttercream) then sugarpaste.

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It was airbrushed red, and the board covered with more sugarpaste Tetris bricks.

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Now I will bombard you with some more photos, in part because some of the details are easy to miss, especially the Zelda ones. I have no idea what an Ocarina is, but apparently it was important in the games (it’s the blue thing!).

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It was great to make a cake that reflected the couples interests so well, and having completed the massive tidy up of the kitchen (the downside of working with chocolate), I find my self in a bit of a post wedding cake slump. However, this will be lifted very soon by the making of a birthday cake, of which I will hopefully remember to take more making of pictures.

 

A Yorkshire Wedding Cake

This weekend saw the completion of my third wedding cake. It had an excellent and unique theme – Yorkshire. The couple came to me with their ideas, and after a few sketches we confirmed which design to go with, along with the sizes and flavours wanted. In case anyone ever needs to know, rhubarb and vanilla jam can only be found in Waitrose, unlike rhubarb and ginger jam which can be found in every shop in Edinburgh (and an assortment of places off the A9 too).

The base tier (vanilla) was to be the Yorkshire country side, complete with rough fell sheep. The middle tier (chocolate) was to have a representation of the Yorkshire flag. The top tier was a Yorkshire pudding, complete with bride and groom figure.

I like a blog post with photos to show the making of pictures, but time tends to get away from me and having to wash my hands before I cover the camera in cake/ icing is a fiddle. So at Lewis’ suggestion, we set up the Gopro, which can be used to make time lapse videos. It worked really well – apart from the battery recharging while I actually covered the cakes. You can see the bottom and middle tiers being iced, then the decorations being applied.

The Yorkshire pudding doesn’t really feature in the video, but that was air bushed yellow, then with a mix of yellow and brown, a bit more brown on top. I then filled it with ‘gravy’ aka piping gel, which was surprisingly easy to make!

Here is a shot of the finished cake once it is all in place at their venue, Surgeons Hall in Edinburgh.

Yorkshire wedding cake

The groom did not quite make it to the very end of the night – I guess he could not resist a swim in the gravy! (it was taken on my phone)

Gravy groom

Fender Stratocaster Wedding Cake

I was excited to land my first non-family wedding cake in July. And a little bit more excited to find out it was for a novelty cake, which is after all, my specialty. The request was for a guitar – not just any guitar though, a Fender Stratocaster. I admit to knowing nothing about guitars, but my research (which included standing in a shop in Newington just staring at guitars) suggested that this is *the* guitar to have.

So I started off with making a huge cake, to cut to shape using a template. Then making a smaller cake to add on when that one just didn’t have the right proportions on its own. With a giant cake board purchased, I assembled and buttercreamed the cake.

Naked guitar

I did some serious airbrush practice before this – black on to white, on a wedding cake – it doesn’t get much more high pressure than that. Thankfully practice made perfect. Then it was a case of hand painting on the other colours, and fixing on the white plate.

Airbrushed cake

In a surprising fit of organisation I had premade all the silver bits earlier on, using grey sugarpaste. For the screws, I used silver lustre dust. For the tuning pegs, I used the Dr Otker spray. I really like both looks, but if you are ever using the spray, be warned that it does cover everything in the room (people included).

Silver bits

For the neck of the guitar, some serious maths was used to get the scale right. I used my extruder to make the frets, edible pen for the inlays and spaghetti for the guitar strings. There are a few different ways you can make the strings, but I wanted to stick with a 100% edible.  Then there was writing ‘Fender Stratocaster’ on the head as well. Again a bit of practice with writing on paper beforehand seemed to pay off. To finish it all off, I covered the board in yellow sugarpaste, before using gold lustre dust to turn it golden.

Finished guitar

Giant novelty cakes are no fun if the delivery isn’t a bit of a challenge as well. Thankfully I got parked right outside the venue, Cruz in Leith, as the finished cake weighed about a ton. Carrying the cake up a flight of stairs just proved that while cake decorators need the ability to do the fine detail work, they also need arms like Popeye to actually deliver the finished article!

 

 

Whistler Wedding Cake

I was super excited when my cousin announced she was getting married. I was even more excited when she asked me to make their wedding cake! After some discussion, she and her fiancé were have to give me free reign with the design as long as it represented Whistler, where they met. Now that sounds like a brilliant thing, but when you have complete freedom, you want to do everything you can think of! They had ordered customised cake toppers from Itty Bitty Wood Shoppe, which gave me a starting point for the look of the cake.

I decided to make the cake look like the mountain as well. Not quite a novelty cake shape, but topsy turvy so that it looked like mountains but in a more elegant way.  As an extra challenge, the cake was to be dairy free and low fat. My mum took over the baking and modified the recipes a bit so they would hold up to the carving and stacking needed.

I did some of the advanced decorating myself at home to test out ideas, and roped in dad to help with it too. Making sign posts was more a test of getting the colours right, and came together fairly quickly. Making the right kind of trees was a whole other story. I found this really handy website with 10 ways of making trees which was a great starting point. But even so, none of the trees looked right for the image I was working to.  I had recently purchased an extruder, which lets you make strings of sugarpaste. And so I hit on the idea of using this to make the trees. I might have under estimated exactly how long it would take to make trees this way, so my dad spent a fair bit of time helping to make a miniature forest.

The trees

The building of the cake happened at my mum’s house, so I lugged my supplies and ganache over to their house. I was impressed I managed just one trip from the car, mum was surprised by how quickly I took over the whole kitchen.

First up was carving all of the cakes. I judged it by eye especially as I wanted a bit of a rough result to keep the mountain theme going. The top tier had to stay flat for the toppers to go on.

A naked cake

Everything then got covered in ganache, made of either white chocolate or dark chocolate. Quite a bit of the kitchen got covered in ganache as well. It is a scary thing working with dark chocolate next to white chocolate, and next to white sugarpaste, but we managed without any mess.

Ganached cake

Sugarpasting the cakes was a bit of a challenge. Not only were they reasonably big – apart from the 6 inch cake, there was a 9 and a 12 inch cake – but the lip from carving them makes it trickier to cover.

The iced trio

With that done, the cakes needed stacked. Although similar to stacking a regular shaped cake, the topsy turvy needs to be stacked so the angles look good as well.

Stacked

The next stage was the decorating, the less technical and more creative part of doing the cake. The first part was to add the snow, made from royal icing. This also acted as the decoration to hide the joins.

Snow covered

Next up was adding the little Inukshuks and the trees. We had the toppers on so we could see how everything fitted together.

The basics

Details like the leaves, snowboard and signs were going to be added at the venue, as they were a bit more fragile. I travelled with my ‘assistants’ before the wedding, equipped with a wee emergency kit just in case of any disasters. Thankfully though, there were no problems. I had ordered an extra strong, large box from Catherine Scott to transport the cake in, much better than the normal thin cake boxes you get.

Boxed up

With the cake set up at The Vu, all that was left was for the bride and groom to see the cake – thankfully they loved it too!

The wedding cake

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