I LOVE doing this.. like really, this is my thing.
Life’s been so busy lately I haven’t been able to go all out on a cake for a while. The stars aligned for this one and I got to put my all into it!
The birthday boy loves his basic yellow cake with chocolate frosting, so I broke out the box cake and store bought frosting. Some would say, “Blasphemy!” I know, I’m a baker, I should’t resort to box cakes, but at the end of the day, who cares right? You can’t replicate nostalgia, box cakes have a certain taste and feel, I grew up on them and will always have a special place in my heart for them!
So, I did two layers of yellow cake sandwiched with chocolate frosting! And did all the decor using vanilla buttercream! This cake is proof that you don’t have to use fondant to make “fun” cakes. All you need is a little imagination and a willingness to fail. Oh, and lots of icing.
Here’s what I did for the toppings:
Crust: I got the right light brown, did a nice clean coat, chilled the cake, and then used my blow torch on the edges and sides to give it a more shiny look. Be very careful and just lightly torch the icing, too long and it will melt off the cake!
Pizza Sauce: Use your microwave and melt your colored icing for about 7 seconds. It should be pretty soupy, pour it in the center and use a spatula to move it out to the edges and create an uneven look on the edges to make it look more “real”, chill the cake again to set the sauce.
Pepperoni: Color more icing a little bit darker red, spread it about 1/8″-1/4″ thick on a piece of parchment, place that in the freezer to stiffen, ice a 1.5″ to 2″ round cutter to punch out rounds, place it on a new sheet of parchment and keep it chilled, flip the pepperonis over when placing it on the cake, the air holes in the icing show up really well and make it look Just like real pepperoni pieces!
Cheese: I tried to grate frozen buttercream but it failed, so I tried out spreading a thin layer on parchment, chilling it and then using a knife to cut little strips, then I froze it again and then broke it into pieces right before I put it on the cake
Olives and Green Peppers: I colored my icing, and piped out little rounds in black and some wiggly strips of green, i froze these as well and use a mini offset to help me remove them from the parchment right before placing them on the cake
Mushrooms: I used a piping bag to pipe out mushroom shapes, froze it, placed it on the cake with the parchment side down (flat) and used melted down icing colored in dark brown and painted on the dark spots!
Red Onions: I piped skinny white lines and melted purple icing down and paintd on the purple and froze it really well before placing it on the cake
Sausage: I colored icing to be dark brown, made sure it was a bit stiff and then made little mounds and used my spatula to make them un even and kind of lumpy, froze them, placed it on the cake and then torched each one a little, it melted it a bit and the colors were perfect, some parts were darker than others, making it look like real sausage pieces!
Basically, you can use buttercream to make lots of basic shapes and melting icing turns it into paint so the possibilities are endless! So when you’re tempted to use fondant, pause, and consider just using icing! It’s delicious and that much more impressive!