Introduction: How to Make a Mach 5 From Speed Racer Cake

About: Hello! I am an artist who has decided to try cake decorating after a close friend suggested it. I have been making cakes since August of 2010. I'd watched a lot of the various cake shows on TV and decided to t…

Greetings again everyone!

I made this Mach 5 from Speed Racer cake for my friend's birthday and took some photos along the way so I wanted to share how I made it. :)

The cake is alternating layers of classic yellow cake and butter pecan cake, with cream cheese icing with chopped walnuts in it in between the layers. It's covered in marshmallow fondant and then hand painted with food colorings. The tires are made from rice cereal marshmallow treats and covered in the fondant and painted. I also had the car lifted so I could fit in the tires and have it look as if it was really sitting on the tires and not the cake board.

Continue to the next step for the supplies and recipes.

Step 1: Supplies and Recipe Links

Here's a list of supplies that I used. There are also recipes or links to recipes used. A lot of the supplies are general cake baking and decorating supplies.

• Cake pans for baking the cakes. I used a quarter sheet pan for both boxes of mix.
• General cake decorating supplies: Mixer, spatulas, turn-table, carving/clay/fondant tools, mat to roll fondant on*, fondant rolling pin, gel food colors, knife, cake leveler, toothpicks, food-safe paintbrushes, small containers to mix food color "paints" in, 3 quarter sheet cake boards, Exacto knife, hot glue gun, tape, foil to cover cake boards, etc.
• Ingredients to make cakes, fondant and to mix food colors with (you will mix the food colorings with something like vodka or clear vanilla extract, not water.)
• A disposeable clear plastic container, like the Glad or Reynolds containers, to cut up and use as the windshield.

*The photos here are of the vinyl mat I use to roll my fondant on. The cake shop I took some classes at suggested this mat for fondant and they sold it there for only $6.00 and it works so great. A lot better than the name-brand mat I had bought before for $20.00.

Here's the link to the alterations made to a box cake mix to make it a little stronger to better support sculpting. I used 2 boxes of cake mix to make this cake. Both were quarter sheet cakes.

I used store-bought cream cheese icing for this cake instead of making buttercream because the friend the cake was for wanted that type of icing.

Here's the link to how to make the marshmallow fondant, which is pretty yummy, although very sweet! Pre-made fondant can be bought if you do not want to make the marshmallow fondant but beware that some of the pre-made doesn't taste very appetizing.

Step 2: Bake, Level, Cut and Stack the Cakes.

After baking the cakes as per the recipe, let them cool completely and then level off the tops of the cakes as best as you can and then split/torte each cake into 2 separate layers (as shown in one of the photos in this step.)

Then I stacked the layers, alternating flavors, with a layer of cream cheese icing with walnut pieces sprinkled on, in between the layers. I needed the overall size to be a little longer and thinner so I cut off a side a little bit in and attached it to the end with more icing (as shown in one of the photos in this step.) You'll want to have this all on waxed paper, on a cookie sheet, for later to make transferring it to the cake boards easier.

While the cakes were cooling I made the support system of cake boards, which is shown in the next step.

Step 3: Constructing the Support System/cake Boards and Cutting General Outline of Cake.

I used three 13" x 19" cardbaord cake boards for this cake.

Two of them were hot glued together and covered in foil and the third was used to make the support system I came up with.

Here's how I made it:

I drew a general outline/shape of the Mach 5, as if looking down on it from above, on one half of the cake board. Then I cut it out and traced it's shape on the other half of the board and cut that out too and hot glued them together so it would be sturdier to hold the weight of the cake and the fondant. Kind of like a "footprint" the cake would sit on. I then cut out areas on the sides of this to allow space for the tires later since this footprint would be at the bottom of the cake.

Then with the left over scraps I cut out enough squares and scraps to equal 5 pillars of cardboard 4 layers high. I then glued 4 pieces together to form 1 pillar and then glued those 5 pillars to the bottom of the car outlin/footprint, a little bit in so they wouldn't easily be seen but still support the cake and allow room fot the tires. Then I covered the outline/footprint in foil.

Before connecting the outline piece to the main cake board I used the outline on the cake as a template of where to cut my basic shape. I layed it on my stacked cakes and cut around it, a little bigger than the outline so that the edges of cardboard wouldn't show or jut out from the bottom of the car.

Next I put a small dab of icing on the bottom of each pillar and positioned the piece, pillar bottoms down on my large foil covered cake board that would hold everything, so that the icing would leave a mark where the pillars touched down. i then removed it and cut out the foil in those sections where the icing was on the larger main board so that I could hot glue the pillar/outline support to the main board. I wipe the icing off the bottom of the pillars before glueing it down.

Then I spread a thin layer of icing, without walnuts, ont he top of the footprint and flipped it over and placed it on the cake shape I had cut out then held the cookie sheet to the bottom and my hand on the top (bottom of the main cake board since it's upside down and flipped the whole thing then lifted the wax paper off the bottom (now top) of the cake.

And on to the carving!

Step 4: Carving the Cake!

Next came the carving of the cake to shape it.

I printed lots of reference photos from the internet, many different angles, etc.

Then begin carving. I just use a steak knife to carve the cake. I also realized here that I'd cut out the wheel area the entire height of the car and shouldn't have so I used some of the scraps to fill back in the area above the wheel areas with cake, glued in with the icing.

I don't get too detailed here, as it's too hard with cake, so just a rough shape. The main details are done in fondant.

Once it's carved to your liking, cover it all in a layer of icing. I use a #45 tip in a piping bag and pipe on the icing so that it's gentle and the cake stays together. Since there's some thin parts, using a spatula to apply it can easily mess up the cake.

Next step is the fondant!

Step 5: Applying and Detailing the Fondant.

After the carved car is covered in icing, roll out some fondant large enough to cover the car, about the size of the main cake board, so there will be enough to wrap under the car footprint board a little. I rolled it out a thickness of about 1/6 of an inch of a large piece of vinyl that I use for fondant that it doesn't stick to.

To layer it on the car I lightly and loosely roll the fondant around my fondant rolling pin to lift it up without it's own weight tearing it. Gently lay it, unrolling it from the pin as you go, over the cake. Then use your hands to smooth it all down over the cake and round the parts of the car. You only need to smooth it out over the top of the cab because you will want to just cut the shape of the cab out in the center to just smooth down the fondant because the seats and dash, etc. with me made out of fondant and then inserted later.

It was a little tricky around the front half of the car. I used my cooking scissors to cut some slits int he fondant in between the cone-shaped areas of the front of the car so i could wrap the fondant down around each cone.

Then I cut off the excess around the car, leaving about an inch of fondant at the bottom that I could wrap under.

Next I used various gum paste tools, and my fingers, to add further details, smotthing it out as best as I could and creating the lines for the doors, trunk/boot, etc.

I also formed the rice cereal treats into tire shapes, covered them in fondant and detailed those as well.

Will go over the cab in the next step.

Step 6: Creating the Cab and Final Details.

I created the cab items all out of fondant.

First I filled in the cab walls and floor with a piece of fondant.

Then I made the long rectangle center part where the stick shifter is and a smaller one for in between the seats. I used a little water on a brush to "glue" them into place. Water on fondant makes it sticky so it's great to use to stick fondant to fondant.

Next came the seats. I formed the bottom part of the seats first, glued them in, then formed the backs of the seats and glued them in place.

Next I painted everything in the cab red with red gel food coloring mixed with a little vodka. You want to use something alcohol based to mix the food colorings with because using water would ruin the fondant. You could use vodka, everclear or colorless vanilla extract.

Next came the dash. I formed it with fondant, glued it in place, put some simple details in like the round dials and the glove box. Then I painted it with the colorings.

Next I made the shifter stick from fondant, glued it in and painted it with the edible silver food coloring.

I then made the steering wheel out of fondant. I rolled a ball, flattened it and added some basic details, made a simple steering column to put it on and glued it in place. Then painted with the colorings.

Next step is detailing and painting the rest of the car.

Step 7: Finishing It Up!

For the final details I painted in the doors creases so they would show a little better and painted the tires and then glued them in place with a little water.

I made the license plate, glued it in place and painted on the numbers.

I made oval depressions in the back for the tailpipes, painted them in black and glued in the tailpipe ends. To make the tailpipes I rolled tiny little balls of fondant then attached them with water and used the end of oen of my paint brushes to push in the centers. I then painted them.

Next I painted the other details of the car: the M on the hood, the number on the doors, etc.

I made the fins out of fondant, with a tooth pick inserted into each one that would help hold it up and help secure it to the car along with a little water.

I cut up the plastic container into the windsheild shape, a little taller so that I could push it into the cake a little and it would be secure. I set the windshield in place and used it as a template of where to make the curved incision to push the piece down into a little ways.

It's done!

My friend loves Speed Racer and loved the cake. He knew he was getting a cake but had no idea what it was going to be. :) Surprises are fun!