My partners and good friends of 10 years asked if I wanted to make a cake for their Mardi Gras party. This would be the first party they have thrown on such a large scale since I’ve know them so it was kind of a big deal. I hemmed and hawed for like five minutes – I really wanted to do a fun wonky topsy turvy Mardi Gras cake. But this cake also made me so nervous. I wanted to do it but I was afraid of it. I was talking to my 9-year-old daughter, Sophia, about it and I said “I don’t know how to do a topsy turvy cake!’ and she replied, “Well, you’ll learn something new!” I hate it when the little ones throw your words back in your face.
So I first took a great class on Craftsy called A New Look at the Crooked Cake that really made topsy turvy cakes seem much simpler than I had imagined. I also looked at a tutorial on a site that I refer to often called wickedgoodies.net.
I love how the baker/author of Wicked Goodies compares the topsy turvy cake to Michelangelo’s David. It elevates cake decorating to a higher art form in my mind.
Anyway, this was the schedule:
2 weeks ahead of event:
Baked cakes and froze them: Two 10″x2″ vanilla cakes, Two 6″x2″ vanilla cakes, Two 4″x2″ vanilla cakes
1 week ahead of event:
Made purple and white fondant (By the way, I usually make Jessica Harris’ version of Rhonda’s Ultimate MMF but I had heard so many great things about Liz Marek’s MMF that I wanted to try it. I used Liz Marek’s recipe for the purple and I am totally sold, will never make anything else ever again. It was so much easier to work with than the white fondant I used for the middle tier — no tears, no elephant skin)
Made teal, white, yellow and black modeling chocolate
Made caramel Swiss meringue butter cream and froze it (I already had homemade caramel on hand)
3 days ahead of the event:
Made white and dark chocolate ganache and left overnight to set at room temperature.
2 days ahead of event:
Pulled cakes out of freezer, torted, filled and carved cakes. Put the cakes back in the fridge to settle and firm up the buttercream.
Crumb-coated and iced cakes with ganache and let them sit out at room temperature overnight
Day before event:
Covered cakes with fondant, stacked and decorated them with modeling chocolate.
Delivered cake all assembled to my friend’s house (longest 6 miles of my life) and attached mask with white chocolate.
My photographer (husband) left after this but I wanted to tell you about some of the cool decorating tools I used on the cake. I used a Yunko 23cm Beautiful Pearl Necklace Silicone Mold for the gold beads. I got this great idea fron the internet to fill the mold with gold luster dust before I loaded it with the modeling chocolate. It was so cool — they popped out of the mold already covered in gold. By the way, I used yellow modeling chocolate rather than white. I used a lace mold for the accents on the middle tier and an Ateco diamond cutter for the top tier. This cake was a lot of fun but a little nerve-wracking to make. My husband and I had so much fun at the party that we didn’t want to leave!