Ohhh, yes. The ever infuriating Rubik's Cube. No doubt we have all spent a good deal of time on our favorite 80s toy. Some of us are naturally gifted...most of us are not. Alas.
Regardless, I think we all hold a place near and dear to our hearts for the cube. It is a timeless symbol of geekiness! Let us not forget it!
In this instructable, I will teach you how to pay tribute to this awesome cube. It's simple to do and anyone can achieve the awesomeness that is the final project. Wow your friends and read on!
Step 1: Bake the Cake
First, you need to chose a type of cake to bake. It really doesn't have to be any particular kind for this cake. Use your favorite recipe or box mix and double it.
You will need:
-Recipe or cake mix of your choosing X2
-9x9 square inch cake pans. (You can either have three or you can bake the cake in shifts)
-Your choice of frosting
-Your choice of filling
-LOTS of food coloring in red, green, yellow, and blue. -This will be for the squares
-Either black food coloring or dark chocolate ganache.- Depends on your taste. This will cover the cube. Black food coloring tends to dye mouths purple and a ganache can be shinier. However, you might achieve more of a black by using food coloring. More on this later.
-Fondant- I highly recommend making your own marshmallow fondant. It's simply, delicious, and looks very professional
So, get started baking your cake. You will want to prepare double your recipe for this cake. I like to use box mixes because they are no fuss and turn out delicious. I do, however, think it makes a world of a difference to prepare your own frosting. Poor your batter into designated square pans. If you have to rotate one pan to bake all three, it won't hurt, but it will take longer. ;) Bake until the cakes lightly bounce back when you touch them or just before.
FYI- Cakes actually continue baking in their pans even when you pull them out of the oven. To get a really moist cake, pull the cake out just before it looks done and it should cook to perfection. In my opinion, nothing beats a moist cake. Another thing I suggest to maintain moistness is to put some cling wrap over the cake when it cools a bit. It will collect the condensation and keep your cake very moist! I usually only do this for cakes that have a tendency to dry out more such as chocolate, but do what you like!
Step 2: Prepare the Marshmallow Fondant
For this step you will need:
- A bag of good quality mini marshmallows. I say good quality because I have used discount marshmallows that refused to melt!
- 2-5 tablespoons of water This isn't exact. You may need more or less. You just want your fondant to be workable.
- 1 bag of powdered sugar (or icing sugar)
- Crisco or anything nonstick for your hands and counter. Things WILL get sticky!
Melt your marshmallows and and about 2 tbs of water in a large, microwave safe bowl. Put the bowl in the microwave for 30 second intervals. After every 30 seconds, open microwave and stir the mixture until it is fully melted. This should take about 2.5 minutes. When melted, pour about 3/4 of the powdered sugar on top of the marshmallow.
Now things get messy! Grease your counters WELL. Be liberal with your amount of shortening you spread around. Be sure to get it on your hands and wrists as well. I know it feels weird! Just go with it and you'll have nice and soft hands when you're finished. :)
Start kneading your mixture like it was bread dough. You now have discovered the stickiest thing known to man! Contemplate your plans for world domination with such stickiness and keep on kneading. Abandon your plans and keep kneading. Add the rest of the powdered sugar. If you're sticky- add more grease, if your fondant is tearing- add a little water. You will want to work it until it becomes a smooth, elastic ball.
Now you will want to break it off into little groups for your colors. You will need 6 separate balls for each color. The best way to color these is to get individual baggies for them and drip in the food coloring into the bag. Now you get to knead some more! Knead and add color until you get the color you're looking for. Continue with each color. Set aside.
Step 3: "square" the Cakes
After your have completely cooled, you will want to level and square them. You'll notice that the tops and sides are rounded and that of a real cube, are not. ;)
To get the sides square, use a paper template to get even results. To level the top, you can use a cake leveler or you can find something to use as a mark for even knife leveling. In the picture bellow, a box of powdered sugar happens to be the perfect height for such a project.
Step 4: Begin to Form the Cube!
First thing you need to decide is how your cube is going to sit. I prefer the "in progress" look of the cube, but you can have it be a correctly aligned cube if you so desire. :)
Put the filling of your choice in between the layers to assure stickiness and added yumminess! The kind of filling is totally up to you.
Now...stand back and admire your work, thus far.
The next step is to cover your cake in a "crumb coat" with your frosting. Don't feel bad when this looks ugly. That's why it's a crumb coat. Just make sure to evenly coat your cube and let dry before you move on to the next coat of frosting.
Frost it one more time so that it looks nice and clean. Basically, we just don't want to see crumbs. Also, get it as smooth as you can manage.
Now, we're going to transform out pale cake into a black cube of awesome! There are two ways to do this
1- Use black food coloring. If you do this, you will have a very black cake and a purple tongue when you eat it. DO NOT MIX WITH FROSTING. If you do, you shall be very sad at a very gray cake. Instead, after your second coat of frosting is dry, paint on the food coloring. Get a nice even coat.
2- Use chocolate ganache. This tastes terrific, but gives a dark brown instead of a true black. It depends on what you prefer.
How to make ganache
- 1 lb bittersweet chocolate, chopped
- 1 pint heavy cream
- 5 1/3 ounces unsalted butter
1. Bring cream and butter to a simmer.
2. Pour over chocolate and stir/whisk until melted and smooth.
Make sure your cube is evenly coated and allow it to dry completely before moving on.
Step 5: Make the Tiles!
Now, get out those six baggies you should have.
You now want to roll these out and cut them into small squares. One should equal slightly less than a third of the cake, so that when you have nine on there, it will look right. To do this, roll out the color into a rough square and hold it up to the cake. If it looks about right, cut the colored square into nine equal parts. Do this for each color.
Step 6: Tiles, ASSEMBLE!
Time to apply your tiles! If you have a cube handy, get it out and scramble it to your liking and then apply your tiles accordingly. Paint the backs of each of your tiles with a small amount of water and apply to the cake. Patience, young Skywalker. This will take some time.
Step 7: Clean It Up!
Now, brush over your tiles with some water to give the cube a nice, clean look.
And you're done!
Put your real cube next to your cake one and admire your great job!
If you liked this, please vote and rate!
**I'd like to thank the guys over at Pimp that Snack for letting me use the pictures and inspiring me to develop my own process.**