I hosted a friend's baby shower this past weekend, and I decided to show off my novice baking skills by baking her a cake from scratch. After spending way too much time deciding on what to bake, exactly, I found two recipes that seemed perfect for my giant cupcake pan--a white cake and nearly-professional buttercream icing.
So, at 7 p.m., I began baking.
I made two of these tops because, as it turns out, "non-stick" pans aren't truly non-stick. Having a crumbled cake did give me a chance to taste the goods before presentation, so it wasn't all bad. Jim said I could served the broken bits as "Baby Vomit," on par for the theme. (He was immediately banished from the kitchen for that comment.)
While the second top was baking, I started frosting the bottom half, trying to keep it together since it had broken when removed from the pan.
Then, on a whim, I decided to layer it with strawberries. I made the sauce, slathered it on the bottom half of the cake, and then watched in horror as it bled down the sides. I was nearly frantic. How does one present a bloody mushroom cake to a pregnant woman?
Quickly, I tossed on the almost-cool top and iced it with a color I had just mixed together.
As you can see, it was dreadful. At this point, I wondered how much it would cost to convince the baker to make a cake the morning of the party...but I kept at it, icing it more, making a new batch of icing, getting the piping done, and then I resurrected the zombie cake:
It looked like a circus tent, and less like a mushroom, which made me happy. Plus, I had some cute little cupcakes. I put it in the fridge, went to bed (it was 1 a.m. at this point), and dreamed of bleeding cakes. (Totally unsuitable for baby showers, btw.) When I was awakened by Monster Child #1 at 5:30 a.m., I ran downstairs and fully expected the cake to have fallen apart, or the strawberries to have leaked the bottom, but it was perfectly fine. And tasty, too. It was just too cute and I was so proud of myself.
Next time, though, I'm making a cake with just regular circular pans. None of this giant cupcake with strawberry layer mess. And I'm going to make it chocolate.