Hello, WCW, fancy seeing you here again! I know it’s been a little while… okay, a LONG while… since I’ve shared what I’ve been cooking, but in the peak of wedding season, gourmet meals come to a halt and it’s all boring casseroles, frozen dinners from Trader Joe’s and Wawa subs (which I secretly love).
A few weeks ago, my very dear friend turned 30! To celebrate, we gathered a bunch of friends and headed out to Barrel Oak Winery in Delaplane, VA. After finding out only weeks before that she was pregnant (with twins!), I offered to help by bringing the birthday cake. I called a bunch of local places and unfortunately on short notice, no one was able to fulfill our order. In a near panic, Rob stroked my ego and assured me I could handle it (after all, I’m the daughter of an unprofessional cake making genius, so surely it would be hereditary, right!?)… and so, off we went to Michaels! I’ve made tons of cakes in the past, but normally just for small gatherings. I picked up 12″ cake pan that was supposed to be enough to feed 30 people (side note: it could’ve fed like 50!), fondant making supplies, and icing dye.
The great part about cakes is, you can make them in phases. I made the cake portion about a week before the party and froze it, which I do for every cake I make! I do this for two reasons: first, it’s much easier to ice when it’s frozen. And second, it makes the cake SO much more moist (ew, sorry friends). But it’s true! It holds in the moisture and when it thaws, it’s somehow even better than when it first came out of the oven.
Then I started on the fondant as I wanted to top the cake with a large, gold bow. Michaels was good to me and I bought it pre-made! I simply had to roll it out, cut out my shapes, and form them together. Pinterest was a huge help with this part, of course :) They dried over the next few days until I was able to paint them with fondant dust so it was a rich, shimmery gold.
And then finally, the good part, the icing! I whipped up several batches of my mom’s recipe and did a quick dirty ice around the cake to ensure the rosettes would hold. I split it up into three bowls and added a bit more color to bowl two and even more to bowl three to create an ombre effect. Using my star tip, I started at the bottom of the cake with the darkest icing and just went for it! In hindsight, I probably should have done a few practice swirls, but you only live once I guess!
It turned out even better than I could’ve imagined once it was all put together! The birthday girl was overjoyed (and so was the staff at the Barrel Oak who got all the leftovers!)! It was definitely an undertaking, but I hope to try another design soon!