I put on a baby shower for my daughter's first child, and the theme was "woodland creatures". I wanted to do an easy cake that would not take a lot of time but still look good. I am no baker so I needed it simple because I am baking impaired and really not very good at it. I did some searching on the web and found some basic ideas for cakes. I finally came up with a wood stump type of cake accented with woodland creatures. The cake is made up of 2 layers of a vanilla cake, it is covered in a butter cream frosting. The bark of the "stump" is light, dark and penut butter melted chocolates.
The moss around the cake is sugar cookie dough tinted green and baked.
The creatures are made from different colored fondant, and the little flowers and bees are bought flowers from walmart
The hardest part of the cake is the little animals but they really were not all that hard to make.
Step 1: The Cake
The cake itself was a store bought 2 vanilla boxed cake mixes that I baked as directed. I baked two round 9" cakes and went with a strawberry filling that I got from amazon. Again I wanted this to be easy. I got the filling here
I did bake the cakes a day ahead of time. I did use cake pans that used a round thing in the middle of the cake to make sure the middle got done.
I then put a thin layer of basic buttercream store bought icing and let it sit overnight. ( I did not color this icing I just left it white)
I did use a round base that moved in a circle to help me ice the cake better.
I bought the icing at walmart in a tub it is the below icing , it can also be bought at amazon
Step 2: Outside the Cake
Now that the cake has set up over night and chilled you can add the outside icing. I used the same butter cream icing in the previous step, but used a brow coloring and make it tan. I then Iced the full cake.
Once the cake was fully covered it was time to move on to the "bark"
For the bark I used candy melts melts. I found mine at Walmart. They were the Wilton candy melts. I used the dark chocolate, the light chocolate and the peanut butter.
Here is one bag from amazon
I melted each bag in its own glass container in the microwave (follow the directions on the bag).
I laid out a sheet of wax paper. I then took a spoonful of the dark chocolate and spread it into a line about 1-2 inches across. I then took the light chocolate and put a line on top of the dark chocolate and then did the same thing with the peanut butter melts. The end result was a piece of chocolate about 5 inches long and about 2 inches wide. The trick is to do different sizes and different coloring to make it look more like real bark. Refer to the picture above this text. I then let the bark cool and broke them into pieces to fit along the outside edge of the cake.
For the age rings on the top. I used a chopstick to draw lines and then used a paint brush to put in brown and black food dye in the lines
Step 3: The Animals
The little woodland animals were the hardest part of the project.
I went online and found photos of the animals I wanted
Here is a link to a bunch of them
I did not make my own fondant, yes it would have been cheaper but I have never made fondant and wasn't really sure I could do it right so I bought some. Again I used a Wilton product and got most of mine from Walmart and hobby lobby. It also can be found online.
So I just looked at the pictures and made them myself. If you really do not want to make these animals yourself you can do a search on Etsy and there are some pre-made ones online
Step 4: The Moss
The moss was super easy and fun. It is just prepared sugar cookie dough that is tinted green , patted down flat and then baked till crisp. I got this idea from from this site
and it worked awesome.
I used the store bought generic sugar cookie dough, and Wilton green food dye ( I used the kind that was in the little tub not the drops) .
I baked them per the instructions on the website.
The trick is to make sure you take some of the green cookie and smash it very fine. Then once you have the moss placed on your platter to sprinkle the mashed up cookie on top so it looks like moss.
Step 5: The End Result
Once you have all your stuff prepared just lay the green cookies around the base of the cake, set the animals around the cookies, and you are done. I used some pre-made flowers and bees to enhance the overall look also and got those at Hobby Lobby.
The end result was fantastic.
Notice the two cakes above. The smaller one was a trial I did to make sure I could do it and the larger one is the cake I made for the shower. I got so many compliments on this cake, it tasted great and it was beautiful. It is pretty easy and anyone can do.