A Very Hungry Caterpillar Birthday

My daughter’s first birthday was in September, and we had planned on having a big party in a restaurant that I booked a few months before the pandemic hit. But as the date drew closer, I realized it would be unsafe to have a party, so we opted for an extremely small gathering at home with just the people we see normally. I still wanted a festive party, so I kept the theme and made a smaller cake.

I made a 6-inch round cake for the head and covered it in fondant. I also used fondant for the antennae, which I attached to toothpicks and stuck into the top of the cake. I hand painted the eyes to give it a watercolor look, like in the Eric Carle books.

I think the birthday girl approved!

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A cake made of cupcakes to celebrate my Nephew’s baptism

The beginning of 2020 didn’t have many celebrations, but I did make some cakes toward the end of the year. Now I’m catching up and posting them before my next project. In July I made this pull apart cupcake cake for my Nephew’s baptism. It was a very fun cake to make, and fairly easy. The hardest part was finding a fridge big enough to fit it in overnight!

I used this online tutorial, which had a great idea to add bits of plastic wrap to fill in the holes between the cupcakes so the frosting doesn’t droop. I used a Wilton large drop flower tip to give the cupcakes a rose-like appearance.

Lastly, I added blue candy pearls for decoration. The larger ones were actually gumballs (which was a surprise to me when I sampled one!). I wrapped the cake board in matching blue floral paper which I actually purchased from a florist for a very reasonable price.

All in all, I was really happy with how this came out, and it’s nice to have another option for a gathering. Who doesn’t love a cupcake?

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Thomas the Tank Engine cake

Of course due to the COVID quarantine, Felicity’s 3rd birthday had to be at home with just the 4 of us. That didn’t stop me from planning a themed party and matching cake. She had chosen the theme of Thomas the Tank Engine months ago, and I really wanted her to have her party. Plus, the creative aspects of cake making/decorating are a good way for me to keep my sanity through all of this.

I’m loving buttercream cakes with fondant accents lately. They have so much dimension to them and are much easier than 100% fondant cakes. So I made Thomas’ face and the letters out of fondant that I had bought online in small batches.

I have a set of 10 circle cookie cutters in all different sizes, and was able to make the face, eyes, and smile using them. Then I used a fondant tool for the eyebrows, nose, and smile lines. I added a ball of fondant under the face to make the nose pop out a bit.

The smoke stack and steam were also made with fondant, and gave it a nice 3-dimensional look.

I was really happy with how the cake turned out and Felicity loved it (which is all that really matters)!

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Spider-Man Birthday Cake

My nephew turned 3 and had his birthday party this past weekend. He LOVES all things Spider-Man. So when asked to make his cake, I knew I had to deliver. I decided to go with a butter cake filled with buttercream, graham cracker crumbs, and fresh bananas and strawberries.

I covered the outside with traditional buttercream that had been dyed a bright red. My new favorite gel coloring is Chefmaster. It mixes a lot easier than Wilton, and doesn’t dry out as easily because it is more liquid.

Then I used white fondant to make the eyes. This small package was perfect. Then I piped black buttercream around the eyes and along the bottom with a star tip. The last step was using Wilton black piping gel to make the spider web details.

This was a 10-inch cake and it easily served 20 with plenty of leftovers.

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Sprinkle Donut Cake Pops

My sister-in-law recently had her baby sprinkle, and the theme was donuts. So I thought it would be fun to make some donut-themed cake pops. Since she is waiting until the birth to find out if the baby is a girl or boy, I made both pink and blue donuts.

I started out making these as I would any traditional cake pop, and added a hole in the middle using a fondant tool. I decided to make these red velvet and use traditional buttercream frosting.

For the coating, I found sea salt caramel Merckens Melts, and they were the perfect color and tasted awesome. Just a little bit of saltiness to offset the sweetness of the cake pop. With a small brush, I brushed the inside of the hole and then dipped the pop in the melted caramel. Usually I do two dips but for this one I just did one since the caramel was pretty thick. Usually, I thin out the dipping chocolate with Crisco, but the caramel melted nicely so this wasn’t necessary.

After they dried, I painted on either pink or blue melted chocolate and immediately dipped them in colored sprinkles. The idea was to make them look like a traditional donut from the Simpsons.

These were really fun to make, and pretty easy, too. I was able to do them in one afternoon.

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