When my friend Andrea asked me to make a cake for her boyfriend's birthday, I jumped at the chance. Andrea is one of my favorite people to serve cake to... why? Because if it were socially acceptable, Andrea is someone who would cut a slice of the cake and then run off with the rest of it. :)
It all started with chocolate cake, chocolate ganache, and fresh strawberries.
Then, in case there wasn't already enough chocolate (is there even such a thing?) I covered the whole cake in chocolate ganache.
After the first coating:
After a whole lot of smoothing:
Yes, you can also see my laptop, which I use to play music while I'm working, and my 2 varieties of vanilla extract, because one just isn't enough for me.
After the ganache set up, I covered the cake in fondant and carefully stenciled on the black stripes using softened fondant and a designer stencil.
Of course, this was my first time trying the stenciling technique myself (and I see people mess it up on TV all the time.) So obviously I chose to use the most unforgiving color combination: black on white. If something does get messed up, you can fix it using vodka. Really, there are two options. Either use a clean paintbrush with some vodka to clean up your mistake or drink the vodka until you can't see the mistake. ;)
I added the image to the top of the cake using a combination of pin pricking through a picture I had printed out and just drawing it using an edible food color pen. Once I had the design outlined, I started painting it with a combination of gel colors and petal dusts diluted with vodka.
I was pretty excited about this cake and about sharing it with friends. Of course it was a big success.
Happy Birthday, Abe!