Ode to a Boy Cake

8 Jul

Boy, the Peach Pit {home, sweet, home} is turning into a bakeria!

[Reflect] It all started at age 16 with a simple job of scooping 31 flavors of ice cream at Baskin Robbins. To fill my down time (besides tasting every flavor with those small pink plastic spoons), I watched another coworker decorate cakes. Now, there is a certain art to decorating a frozen ice cream cake.  You have to carefully select the size and shape of the cake and then match the ice cream layer accordingly.  After the assembly is completed, then you have to slather on a layer of ice cream-ish frosting that conforms to the cake and freezes to a glossy consistency.

My obsessive cake-watching soon became obsessive cake-creating. There were only 2 flavors of cake (chocolate and vanilla), but endless combinations when married with all those ice cream flavors. Jamocha Almond Fudge with chocolate? Cherries Jubilee/vanilla? Why would [that customer] even consider combining German Chocolate Cake with vanilla? I soon began filling the display case with my handiwork. Beautiful red roses and greenery. Vibrant purple pansies with trailing curlicues. Until one day my boss (who I thought was completely oblivious to the onslaught of cakes despite the lack of orders) said, “Why is there a Homer Simpson cake?” Oops…didn’t realize Homer wasn’t a real hot seller! I’m sure that cake ended up in the garbage along with the many other cakes that didn’t sell (and no, all the tossed ones weren’t necessarily mine either…).

So, here we are over 20 years later and I’ve become obsessed again with creating the perfect cake. Since my boys aren’t familiar with the Simpsons (and hopefully won’t be for a while), I’m “happy” (if not slightly anxious) that they’ve requested cakes conformed to the image of “Star Wars”.

I’ve been thinking about this cake for some time now [and by “cake” I mean “cakes” plural since I have 2 boys]. I’ve done so many Google searches for “Star Wars cakes”, “General Grievous cakes”, “Storm Trooper cakes” that I have an entire battle scene going on in my mind. And why someone would want to bite into a cake of a skeletal-robot-who-was-once-a-man-but-fell-into-a-burning-vat-of-something-and-rebuilt-himself-into-blah-blah-blah” simply means that I house a couple of Star Wars-obsessed fans…or at least Evan is…Jack, being the younger brother, well, you know the rest.  So, Jack wants a Darth Vader cake and Evan wants a General Grievous cake (the burning vat guy one).

Now that that’s settled, I turn my attention to the actual cake and what it will look like. Do I use fondant {yuck}? Do I make a cake or cupcakes? Do I make one image of their chosen character or multiple figures in case they choose a new “bad guy” to obsess about…which happens quite frequently? Once again, I am bound by what Google has to offer me.

And here I arrive. I’ve decided to make mini “heads” (as shown above) of some of Jack’s favorite characters. I’m not sure what I will do with them at this point. I guess you’ll just have to stay tuned.  Are the designs original? Mais non, but I found them littered across the internet and then made my own modifications. Since I don’t want to revisit the freehand drawing of several key characters (as seen by my hours-long dedication to creating Hulk), I’m thinking that I will have to resort to fondant…

I’ve been directed to a wonderful website (http://whatscookingamerica.net/pegw/fondant.htm) thanks to my friend Lindsay who fondants all the time. This recipe is quite delicious but the method is definitely mad, {MAD}enning. I will let you take a look at the recipe but all I can say is two things: “ooey, gooey” and “Crisco”.

As I sit here at the computer while my pink-eyed laden child is swathed by the glow of his Playstation2 (and my other is just plain sitting in front of the t.v. for babysitting’s sake), I must bring this post to a close. But I can’t wait for the “big reveal” which I will pass on to you in my spare time…as well as a full on discussion of the disastrous mess marshmallow fondant makes to your counters, floors and self. And thanks librarian, dollar store clerk, Kroger cashier et al {who saw me, watched me, observed me} for pointing out that leaning on a counter full of Crisco, marshmallow goop and powdered sugar will result in a not-so-discreet white-ish midsection.

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