I recently had a request from my wifes friend to make her son a cake based on a photo, as I like to muck around making different types of cakes, this is the result.
Apologies in advance I do come from the land down under so I cant spell colour and I only speak in metric...
Step 1: Gather What You Need
- Cake board to suit
- Large knife
- Small knife
- Rolling pin
- Small decorating paint brush
- Silicon fondant mat (or baking paper works just as well)
- Bamboo skewer
Ready made, or make your own cake, in this instance I used a ready made Sponges.
- 2 x 20cm x 10cm x 3cm slabs and a
- 15cm x 8cm x 8cm slab.
As with the cakes, you can make your own fondant, butter and piping gel icing, but I chose to pre-purchase my fondant and butter icing as mixing black icing is time consuming and messy. I made the piping gel icing as it was unavailable where I live and it was simple enough to make (see later steps).
- Butter icing
- Black Fondant icing
- White Fondant icing
- Red Piping Icing
- Brown food colouring
- Red food colouring
Step 2: Prepare the Cake and Icing With Butter Icing
Prepare the board
- Clean the board and place a little butter icing where the cake will be placed to stop the cake from sliding off.
Shaping the cake
- With the larger sponge cake(s) if needed remove any parts of the cake that need to be joined together so there are no cooked edges are on the internal parts of the cake.
- Level off the top of the cake with a large knife.
- Create the shape of the you want, in this case I went for an oval shape as I could only get a round cake board.
- Clean any cake crumbs from the board and cake.
- Use a small spatula or in my case a butter knife to apply the butter icing. Note: be careful with butter icing on freshly cut sponge cake as it is very crumbly, and edges are prone to breaking off.
- Cover the entire cake in butter icing, then smooth the icing on the cake. Note: this can by made very smooth using a cup of warm water to dip the knife in and then smoothing the icing.
Add the cake mask base and final butter icing
- With the smaller sponge cake cut the cake into the desired oval shape and size.
- Place the cake mask base on the already iced cake.
- Butter Ice the cake mask base cake and smooth.
- Clean the cake board.
Step 3: Icing the Cake - Fondant Icing
Note: Keep any fondant icing not in use wrapped in food wrap or a resealable plastic bag. Fondant icing is very pliable when warm, you can warm it up easily by kneading it in your hands.
Prepare the fondant icing
- I'm too lazy to make fondant icing myself so I buy it in prepared colours from a range of different stores.
- To use this icing well as it has been made some time ago so it needs to be worked a little to make it warm and pliable again, I do this just by kneading it in my hands and on the bench, this is also a great time to add any colouring to change colours as desired.
Roll the fondant icing
- As I need the icing to cover a cake it needs to be rolled out, doing this I flatten the icing out a little before starting to roll it out on the fondant mat.
- Begin rolling the icing out, once have reached a thickness of about 5mm, add a second fondant mat to the top of the rolled out icing and continue to roll.
- Every so often flip the icing over, remove and replace the icing mat to keep icing being rolled out level and to stop it sticking to the fondant mat.
- Once a thickness of around 2-3mm has been reached make sure your icing is big enough to cover all of the cake, including the curve of the mask base, the top and the sides of the cake.
Placing the fondant icing
- Remove the top fondant mat.
- Place the rolling pin at one end of the fondant icing
- Roll the fondant icing and the bottom fondant mat around the rolling pin
- Pick up the rolled up fondant icing in the fondant mat
- Place the loose end of the fondant icing at one end of the cake, with enough fondant icing to cover the side of the cake.
- Unroll the fondant icing so it sits on the cake, with the fondant mat on the top.
- When all the fondant icing is unrolled, you should be able to remove the fondant mat.
- Smooth the fondant icing onto the cake, carefully working the icing into edges and grooves with the sides of your hands. Any creases or bubbles should be able to be smoothed out by gently lifting the edges of the icing to the crease and gently replacing.
- You can also use tools to press the icing gently into any edges if you wish.
Removing excess fondant icing
- Once happy the fondant icing is fully in place, with a butter knife or similar cut the excess fondant off the cake board leaving around 3-5mm of icing from each edge of the cake.
- Remove the excess fondant icing.
- Check the removed fondant icing and keep any that does not have any cake crumbs.
Step 4: Creating the Fondant Icing Mask
Use a reference picture to create your icing mask, I was lucky enough to have my printed reference picture just the right size to use as a template to create the icing mask.
Roll the fondant icing
- Same as the previous steps, although this time use white icing and make it around 8-10mm thick.
Cut the icing mask shape
- Cut the mask shape out from the template using a small knife.
- Cut the eye holes
- Mark all the air holes in the mask by piercing with a skewer
- Mark the painted areas on the mask by tracing the are with a skewer without piercing the paper
- Remove all excess paper
Create the mask icing mask air holes
- Either use a sharp small tubular device (I used a small syringe tube with the end cut off and then slightly sharpened) to shove into the icing at each marked place and then remove the excess piece, or bore a hole with a skewer and make it larger (this can create issues with irregular sizes and pushes icing around).
Add fondant icing nose and eye definitions
- Using a small piece of white fondant icing, create a small nose shape.
- Using small piece of white fondant icing , create a thin roll of icing and cut it into two pieces.
- Turn the fondant mask over
- Using a brush add a thin layer of water onto the areas where the nose and eyebrows are the mask.
- Attach the created nose in position.
- Attach the two rolls of icing around the top part of each eye hole.
- Allow water to dry for a couple of minutes
- Turn the fondant mask back over.
Place fondant icing mask on the iced cake
- This should be simple enough by sliding a spatula or a piece of cardboard under the mask.
- When in the required position, lower the mask close the the cake and slide the mask into position onto the cake.
- Round the edges of the outside, eye holes and air holes of the icing mask.
- Paint the marked areas with a small brush and undiluted red food colouring.
- Using a small knife create marks on the icing mask to look light damage to the mask.
- Using a piece of paper towel lightly brush around the edges of the eye holes and sides of the mask to create areas that look dirty, and brush into the gouges created earlier.
Step 5: Creating the Fondant Icing Knife
I modeled the knife after a hunting style knife I thought seemed appropriate to match the cake.
Knife Blade and Guard
- Make some grey icing by taking some of the premixed white icing and add a little of the premixed black icing and thoroughly knead them together. Add the black icing sparingly as a little goes a long way, but remember you can always add more white to get the colour you want.
- Side step... You can skip the above colouring of the icing and leave the icing white and just use some edible silver paint for a metallic or chrome effect to paint the icing once shaped.
- Roll the grey icing until it is around 5mm thick.
- Cut the icing into a knife shape, bit of an elongated triangle really.
- Shove a bamboo skewer through the middle of the knife, protruding through each end to allow the pointed end to be stuck into the cake, and the other end to have the Guard and handle attached.
- Roll what is to be the 'bevel' edge of the knife so the edge is around 3mm angling up to the middle of the knife where it is to remain at the 5mm thickness making it look like a blade.
- Once happy with the 'bevel' of the blade finish shaping into a knife. Finally add a line down the middle of the knife along the start of the 'bevel' to the 'sharp' edge of the knife.
- If you like you can add the wire cutters to the back of the knife blade by removing small triangular pieces from the back of the blade.
- With a remaining piece of the 5mm rolled grey icing cut a rectangular piece that will be the knife guard.
- Finish shaping the guard by rounding the corners.
- Place the Guard onto the bamboo skewer on the blunt end of the knife to act as the guard.
- Take some black icing and roll into a cylinder to match the size of your knife blade you have made out of icing.
- When you have the required diameter of your handle trim each edge of the handle to the required length with a real knife by putting the real knife sharp edge lightly on the icing handle and rolling it back and forth adding more pressure to the cutting edge of the real knife slowly working through the icing handle until you have cut all the way through.
- Repeat for the other end of the icing handle.
- Add the grip to the icing handle by repeating the above steps to make slight indentations along the icing handle in regular intervals about 0.5mm deep.
- Place the icing handle on the bamboo skewer completing your icing knife.
Insert the Icing Knife into the Cake
Pick up the icing knife and gently insert it into one of the eye sockets sinking the knife slightly into the cake.
WARNING: Any attempts to vigorously stab or throw the icing knife may result in damage to the icing knife.
Note: As you may notice from the pictures my end product knife seems quite a bit shorter than the step by step photos, Yes I did redo the knife, but not the photos, also this is in no way related to the final warning.
Step 6: Edible Blood
Thanks to Google and McGreevy Cakes I was able to locate a suitable recipe for making my edible blood, which was made from Piping Gel
- ⅓ cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tablespoon Corn Starch
- ¼ cup lemon juice (but I’ve used just a dash of lemon extract in a pinch and it works fine)
- ¼ cup water
- Red food colouring
- Add all the ingredients except for the food colouring into a pot (saucepan)
- Mix over high heat until boiling, and then cool.
- Tint as desired!
Make a piping bag
- Grab a mug or a cup
- Grab a plastic freezer or sandwich bag and place it into the cup, roll the edges of the bag over the edges of the cup
- When cool, pour the Piping Gel Mix into the bag inserted in the cup
- Seal the bag
- Pick up the piping bag and when ready cut a small section off of one corner and then let the piping gel pour into the cake, icing knife and partially on the cutting board to look like blood.
Step 7: Finished
Unfortunately I didn't get to see the kids reaction to the cake but I was informed they were suitably impressed and disgusted at the sight, but loved the taste.
Thanks for reading