Sunday, June 6, 2010

How not to make a Bakugan cake

Warning: Incredibly long, drawn out cake drama below.

Where do I begin with this tale of heartache and pain? Hmmm...I guess the beginning is the best place to start the story. My baby boys 9th birthday is this Tuesday. We had his party this weekend. He told me several weeks ago that he wanted me to make his cake and that he'd like for me to try to make the cake in the shape of a Bakugan ball. Side note-apparently Bakugan are all the rage with the 8-10 year old boys. I don't understand it but I'm not a 8year old or a boy. I told him that I'd do my best to make the cake that he wanted. At this time I'd like to blame Ace of Cakes for making this whole idea seem so easy to make a reality. I'd been thinking about the logistics of making a round ball shaped cake. I knew that I wouldn't be able to carve it because my artistic skills rank in the negative numbers. I finally came to the conclusion that my best bet would be to bake the cake in a round Pyrex bowl and then assemble it from there in order to get a ball shape. I wanted to do a practice run with the cake during the week since the party would be on Saturday to be sure that it would turn out. Well, this week got away from me-I blame the 3 day weekend-and I wasn't able to test run my ideas until Friday night.
Wyatt and I were out doing some last minute running around Friday night and I asked him how he wanted the outside of his cake to look. Leave it to my son to tell me that he wanted a fondant covered cake. I did what any other loving mother would do and told him that I'd try to make it happen. I had found a recipe for homemade fondant on Amanda's blog ( and thought that I'd try that. I'll admit it here in the privacy of my own blog that I'm cheap. If I can make something as opposed to buying it I will do so in a heartbeat! I've priced fondant before because I've wanted to get some to play around with and see what I can do with it and I haven't bought it because I think it's kind of pricey. I weighed the price of the pre-made fondant versus the homemade and figured that the taste of the homemade would be better and worth the extra effort. Fast forward to almost 10pm Friday night-once we get home and eat dinner. I get the cakes in the oven with no problems. After looking at the Pyrex bowl I was using I didn't think it would be round or ball shaped enough so I added a 9 in round cake pan to the oven to even out the size of the ball. As I'm getting the cakes out of the oven I read over the recipe for the fondant. Crap!!! It's supposed to be refrigerated overnight or at least for a few hours. It's late but I decided to soldier on. I was determined to give my boy the cake that he wanted. So I'm assembling the ingredients for the fondant and guess what I don't have any of because I used it last weekend during the cake-a-palooza?? Yup, I'm out of powdered sugar. It's 11:45pm. Some people might have decided to give up-not me. The rest of my family went to bed as I ran to Wal-mart to get more powdered sugar. While I was at Wal-mart I decided to venture over to the craft department and look at the cake decorating stuff. Meanwhile I'm mentally going back and forth with just buying the fondant or making it myself. I grabbed the box of fondant and go to walk out. Right then it happens. Mothers, you might know what I'm talking about....Mommy guilt. And it killed me. I put the pre-made fondant back and grabbed the powdered sugar and left Wal-Mart. When I got home I finished making the fondant and put it in the fridge to do it's thing. At this point it's about 1am. I'm tired. Ready to go to bed. But my baby boy will have no cake if I don't do something. So I start assembling the cake. I didn't want to use dowels for support mainly because I didn't think that they'd work. So I trimmed a cake board and put it on top of the bottom layer of cake. I put the flat layer on next then topped it with other round cake. I put a crumb coat on it and put it in the fridge to set while I was waiting on the fondant. Meanwhile I check on the fondant and pull out what I had colored black for the decorations on the ball. I figured that I'd take some gold decorating dust and brush it on the black pieces to make it kind of shiny like the normal Bakugan balls. As I tried to free form cut the shapes I realized that I was in way over my head. So, I scrapped the idea of a fondant covered Bakugan ball shaped cake. I started gathering the ingredients to make a regular chocolate sheet cake. I went to grab the eggs out of the fridge and realized that I had just used all but one of them making the cakes. I was up the creek without a paddle. My baby boy was going to be so disappointed in me. I could have made a middle of the night run to Wal-Mart but I decided against it. Finally, after fighting with the voices in my head (I'm kidding but you know what I mean) I decided to head to bed at 2:45am with the intention of getting up early and trying to salvage the ball shaped cake. The party was to start at 11am and since we were having it at my moms house because she has a pool I wanted to get there at 10am to set up. When I went to bed I figured that I'd get up around 7am and have plenty of time to mess around with the cake or I could just run to the store in the morning and get eggs. I woke up at 8:30am. After running to the store and picking up eggs I realized that I wouldn't have enough time to bake a cake, cool it and then ice it before having to leave to go to my moms. Bring out the fondant! I roll it out and it starts sticking to my counter top. I'm trying to not lose my patience and through a hissy fit over this stupid cake. Finally I get the fondant rolled our and I've got it draped over my rolling pin like a pie crust. I put it over the cake and unrolled it and then my worse fears came to life. It cracked and folded and did everything that I didn't want it to do. I'm almost in tears!! Husband comes in and looks at it and had the nerve to say "can't you fix it?"-huh! As if I had any idea of how to fix it. Then Wyatt comes in and tells me that it doesn't look that bad. His suggestion was that we take the left over fondant and cover up the spots that didn't get covered when I unrolled it and then paint over it. Husband chimes in again with "can't you just cover up the mistakes with icing?"-I proceed to shoot daggers out of my eyes. Finally, after letting a couple tears out I tell Wyatt that we can leave early and go get him a cake from Wal-Mart. No way on God's green earth was I going to serve the Bakugan cake to anyone outside of my house. So, that's what we did. I went and let him pick out a pre-made cake from Wal-Mart and all was well for the party.
I did let them cut into the cake today since it's just been sitting in the fridge in the garage. I made them wait until I could get pictures of the atrocity to share with all of the interwebs. I don't know that I'll be trying to use fondant anytime in the near future. I think I've been scarred for life.
Here's the look we were going for: (sorry, you'll have to follow the link if you want to see)
And here's what we ended up with. I don't know why it looks so pink in the pictures. It wasn't pink in real life. It was more like a pinkish red-apparently my skills for using food coloring stink as well.

1 comment:

  1. Bless.your.heart.

    What a time you had!! I give you MAJOR props for using fondant - Amanda told me it tastes gross and that was enough for me. I love that you tried.

    Way to go YOU!