Monday, December 3, 2012

Checkered cake with fondant angry birds

Last week, I had a party for my son's birthday and invited some of his friends over. After the craziness of handling a bunch of hyper active 7 year olds (especially the boys), I think the next birthday party will be when he is 18 and old enough to handle it all himself.

After the lovely holiday we had, it was back to the routine - getting loads of laundry done and getting the house back in action. Cooking and baking was not something I was very kicked about. I decided to order out the cake, but then this sudden inspiration struck a day before the party I decided to make some angry birds with fondant. He is currently in this 'angry birds' phase and seems to love that game. We also get so much merchandise that it just makes it even more popular, especially with kids. Water bottles, pencils, erasers, bags, shoes, t-shirts...the works ! I have never made or worked with fondant before and I figured I could take a chance. If it didn't turn out well, I could still just go ahead and order out that cake.

fondant angry birds
Pics taken after the party, so its all a bit messy

I was very unsure about how the fondant would turn out. First I needed to figure where I'd get the marshmallows, colours and how I would really go about something like this. A friend offered me her set of liquid food colours. Getting gel based ones was not even an option, so I jumped at this offer. She came over and we made the marshmallow fondant from Sayantani's lovely blog, which was way simpler than I imagined.
Sat up later that evening making the birds and pigs with the fondant. Mixing the colours into it really made it a little too difficult to mould. I then used more sugar and tried to get them pliable.
The birds are a bit shapeless, the eyebrows too bushy, the beaks crooked, but this was my very first attempt and my little fella was thrilled. He gave me the best compliment ever. He saw the birds and pigs and said "You made this Mamma, you really are a Wow mother". Nothing could make me happier.

I had made this egg less vanilla sponge cake from Sharmi's blog, for a friend, who served it with chocolate sauce for her son's birthday. It was a hit with the kids. So I decided on keeping the cake simple and give it a chocolate butter frosting.
But 'simple' wasn't working, not after my son honoured me with the 'Wow mother' title. I remembered seeing this lovely chequered cake on Sunita's blog and have been wanting to try it out for the longest time. So I decided on making a chocolate sponge too and making a chequered cake.

chequered cake with pig

The kids were delighted with the angry birds. I even managed to get candles in the shape of angry birds, so we had 7 candles in a circle in the centre of the cake and the fondant ones around them. I was rushing with the cake and frosting till it was almost time for the party. There was barely any time after I finished frosting the cake, so I couldn't take any pictures. And taking any pictures with the kids all set to pull the angry birds off the cake was impossible.
I had a small piece of cake remaining from the party and of course I brought all my fondant pieces back, and then clicked them, so that explains the messy birds and pigs !

This post is also my tribute to the food blogging world and the wonderful bloggers from whom I have learnt so much and dared to experiment with things that I never ever thought I would make.

Thank you Sharmi, Sunita and special thanks to Sayantani for all the inspiration behind this cake and the fondant.

What you need -

Cakes -
Recipe Source for the sponge cakes - Sharmi
For the chequered pattern - Sunita
1 round vanilla sponge cake
1 round chocolate sponge cake (add 2 tbsp cocoa powder along with the flour to the same recipe as above)

Chocolate sauce for binding
100 gms dark chocolate
3 tbsp cream
3 tbsp icing sugar

Chocolate butter frosting
50 gm baking chocolate
5 tbsp unsalted butter

Fondant (Made and shaped one day earlier)
Recipe source - Sayantani

100 gms white marshmallows
300 gms icing sugar
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 tbsp water
food colours (I used liquid food colours, but gel based would work best)

Crumb for the sides -
8-10 biscuits, preferably chocolate flavoured

What you do with it -

Fondant (Make one day ahead)
In a large glass bowl, take the marshmallows, salt, vanilla extract and water. Microwave for 60 seconds. If not melted fully Micro for another 10 seconds and stir with a well greased spoon. Start adding the sugar, add half of it first and stir continuously. Keep adding till it becomes thick and you can't stir further
Grease you hands really well with the oil and transfer the mixture onto a icing sugar dusted surface. Knead well, adding more icing sugar if it is still sticky. Knead for about 8-10 mins till the dough is soft but dry. Grease the fondant with the oil and wrap it in a cling warp and store it in the fridge
When you are ready to shape it, take the required amount of the food colour and mix it into the dough till you get the desired colour. I needed to add icing sugar when the dough got sticky with the colours. Make the shapes as required. I tried my best to make the fondant look like birds and pigs !

Cakes (Make at least 4 hours ahead)
Recipe Source - Sharmi
Ensure that you bake the cake in the same size pans and allow them to cool completely, for about 3-4 hours. If the top has raised too much, cut to form an even layer.
Use a cookie cutter or place any round plate that is about 1.5"-2" smaller than the cake. Slice the cake carefully, around this shape so you get an inner ring. Place another small plate or bowl to make another circle about 1.5"-2" smaller than the outer one. Cut along the rim. Do this for both the cakes
You will now have 3 rings of each cake. Gently remove the centre rings of both the cakes

Crumb (Make ahead, to save time)
Pulse the biscuits till it form a smooth powder

Chocolate sauce for sandwiching the cakes and layers -
Make the chocolate sauce by heating the chocolate pieces over a double boiler till they melt completely. Take it off the heat and mix in the cream. Stir well till smooth

Chocolate butter frosting (Make this just before you use it)
Melt the chocolate in a small bowl, above a pan of steaming water. Once it melts, place it over a bowl of ice cubes and then add the butter. Beat well over the ice till you get a smooth spreading consistency

Assemble -

Keep the cake rings ready and then use the chocolate sauce like a glue and spread between the rings and then carefully place the rings back together to form alternate rings in both cakes. This way you have one cake with vanilla-chocolate-vanilla and the other with chocolate-vanilla-chocolate
Spread the chocolate sauce above the first cake and then place the second cake above it. Spread the chocolate sauce over the top of the cake and even it out to remove any crumbs. With a large knife spread the sauce over the edges, sealing whatever little gaps that may be there.
Take a large spoonful of the chocolate butter frosting and spread it over the top of the cake. Quickly spread it with the flat side of the knife and make it even.
Take handfuls of the bourbon biscuit powder and cover the sides of the cake all around. You could use any other border design or just leave the chocolate sauce around the sides.
Place the fondant pieces over the cake.


Subhie Arun said...

Wonderful cake n perfectly done

Nupur said...

Now that is one incredible birthday cake! All that work and love you put in- it shows and the result is spectacular.

Nagalakshmi V said...

been meaning to make a check cake for ages. even bought a pan for it but the cake is still in to-do list :)

Reshma said...

You have inspired me to bake a birthday cake ..... :) This one surely looks superb!

Gauri said...

What a lovely cake and you have put in soo much effort in it, the cake has come out really well, and for a first timer .. the birds are just too cute. Am sure the kids had a lovely time.
With such a talented Mom at home I doubt Sid will manage his 18th birtday on his own.. lol

Anonymous said...

order cakes online
Really nice post with yummy cake,i would also try to make for my younger brother's birthday.thanks for sharing.


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