This was my first attempt at a tiered cake. It was time consuming, but simpler than I expected it to be. Inspiration for my cake came from ohsewkaren's instructable found here: http://www.instructables.com/id/Minecraft-World-Cake/
I started with a white cake recipe (my son hates chocolate cake). I found a really good durable white cake recipe at Cake Central. I tripled the recipe.
Instead of using one big cake pan, I used several different sized loaf pans. This made it easier for me to build the cake. Less cutting and smoother sides for frosting. Once the cakes were cooled I started assembling. I used a 14in x 21in cardboard platter. The platter is not very sturdy, so I reinforced the bottom with a large plastic cutting board.
I used a Classic Vanilla Buttercream frosting recipe that I found at the Savory Sweet Life website. Very simple to make and delicious! Ingredients: Unsalted Butter, Confectioners Sugar, Pure Vanilla Extract and Milk. I recommend making this ahead of time and refrigerating it. This way the frosting will not melt as quickly while you are decorating. I also tripled this recipe.
Putting the cake together:
Step one: I started with the largest tier first. I placed a little frosting on the bottom of the platter to glue the cake down. I put frosting in between the tiers to glue them together. ( You could also use a filling if you would like) Then I frosted and put the "dirt" (see step two) on the sides. I repeated the steps for each piece of the cake. At this point the tops of the cake are still unfrosted.
Step Two: The "dirt" sides.(This part was a bit messy) I used Oreo cookies and graham crackers. I crushed them in the food processor until they were a sand consistency. I was amazed at how much it really did look like dirt. I then carefully pressed the mixture with my hands to the frosted sides of the cake. I also used the back of a spoon to press it in a little firmer. I used a marinade brush to sweep the excess "dirt" off the platter. I repeated this step with each piece of the cake before moving onto the next.
Step Three: The 'beach" I first placed white buttercream frosting on the platter and the pressed the oreo/graham cracker mixture on top. I randomly placed Tin Man Brand (Found them at the Dollar Tree) chocolate rocks on the beach.
Step Four: The "grass". I used the same buttercream frosting recipe above. To make the vibrant green color, I used Wilton Kelly Green Icing Color Gel. I used a small star decorating tip and placed them in rows across the top of the cake.
Step Five: The "water". I used Blue Jello for the water. I suggest using the Jiggler recipe. It makes the jello firmer and easier to handle. I made the jello according to directions and placed in a rectangle loaf pan to harden overnight. When I was ready to remove the jello, I placed the bottom of the pan in lukewarm water for a few seconds. I then placed a cookie sheet over the top and carefully flipped it over onto the cookie sheet. (Do not leave the jello in the water for too long. It well get too soft and fall apart). I cut two squares and layed them between the cakes onto the platter. I then cut them into smaller squares to resemble the squares in the Minecraft World. I then placed a small amount of the oreo cookie mixture at the open end to make a "bank".
Step Six: The "trees". I used Kit Kats for the trunks (frozen) and rice crispy treats for the tops. I molded the trees into squares and pressed my finger into the middle underneath to make a small hole so I could place them on top of the Kit Kats. I used Wilton Color Mist for the green. I pressed the assembled trees into the top of the cake. I used some of the left over treetops to make bushes.
Step Seven: Minecraft Guys. I did a Google search and found papercraft patterns to place on top of the cake. Steve, Creeper and TNT. I printed them out, cut and taped them together and placed them on top of the cake. I used toothpicks to secure Steve and the Creeper. The TNT boxes are just set on top of the "water".
That's how I made my Son's Minecraft Birthday Cake. It was a huge hit! The kids and parents LOVED it! Happy Baking!