Friday, December 9, 2011

3-D Alligator Cake Tutorial

Hi Ya'll!

So I have been keeping my promise and blog more often. Well last week I had a very challenging cake for a wedding at the York Country Club here in York, PA. This cake is hands down the most complicated cake I have done so far..everything else was a cake walk (pardon the pun) compares to this cake. The reason why this cake was soo difficult for me was that 1. my hubby decided that this was the cake I was going to learn how to sculpt cake all by myself with out any help from him (insert angry face here) 2. The cake needed to look very to close a picture that the bride provided to me  and 3. The cake was had a curve it and needed serious shading to it.... Well needless to say that I was feeling a bit overwhelm looking at all of the sheet cakes before me trying to figure out where to start first. Seeing my very confused face, the hubby did help me initially by helping me line up the head (hand molded by me and made from rice krispy treats) with the first sheet cake and started carving the outline. I thought at this point he was going to carve the whole thing but noooo..he passed me the knife and said "now is where you have to stop relying on me for the carving of 'your' cakes". Well of course I said a few choice words before I set to the task of carving this big mama of a cake.

In the middle of carving the idea came to me that I should make this a tutorial since I couldn't find any on the internet. I know that some other cake decorators have had this same problem before me and probably after me. By doing this tutorial, I hope to help someone else out too from going through the frustration that I went through to get this cake done. OHH and ALSO I forgot to mention that the bride wanted the cake to be 2 different flavors..yep you heard me 2 different flavors. So I have to mid-way through the carving process stop and glue together with buttercream the second half of the cake. Also the cake had 2 different fillings as well.. I wanted to hit my head up against a wall sandwiching the two sections together while trying to make it look seamless. The picture below is of the cake carved with just the first crumb coat of the two different flavors.

Once I let the cake sit over night then I added the second crumb coat layer which was vanilla bean buttercream.

Now after this point is where I forgot to take more pictures of the process. I was running a bit behind schedule for me. So I can tell you want I did from the crumb coat part. I first covered the cake in a dark green fondant which I made from white, brown and green colored fondant. Once the gator was covered I start with the spine and pinched (while trying to space is evenly) up sections of fondant to replicate the scales on the gator. I worked my way from the back to the front of the cake. I then took a sculpting tool and engaged the lines running in between each scale. After I did that, I then worked on putting in the details on the face and adding the eyes. After that was done I begin to do the shading of the cake by hand with petal dust. Now most decorators would probably use a air brush machine (its much faster), but since I don't have one yet. I had to do it by hand. The coloring was a mix of a dark green and brown dust colors. Once that was done, I think hand molded the legs and glued them to the cake. The final touch I did was mist the entire cake with water to add a sheen to the cake to make the skin look like skin.

All in all I think I did pretty good job. You all tell me what you think....

Well that's it. I took myself out for a much deserved nice dinner after delivering that cake.... :)

Until next time...
Peace & Blessings,