Ali and I both spend a lot of time looking after the monarch butterflies and caterpillars and have planted swan plants especially for them to have food, so I thought it would be a good idea to do a cake based on this. I've made Lloyd's birthday cake before, and of course lots of cupcakes, but I've never taken on quite such an extravaganza before!
I started about a week before the party making the flowers. Lots of fondant flowers!
I love making fondant decorations.
These are done with fondant cutters, then you use tools to shape out the petals and stuff. Great fun!
I had also taken a photograph of some flowers and sent this down to Auckland to get put onto an edible transfer. My idea had been to then cut out the flowers individually and stick them all over the cake. I didn't realise that there would be a slight raised edge round each flower if I did it this way, so I changed plans and just used one of the sheets and stuck it on top of the top tier of the cake.
Anyway! back to the actual cakes.
I made a large, bottom cake - Sicilian Orange cake - the same recipe as I used for Lloyd's cake. Which worked a treat. It had marmalade and orange buttercream as the filling.
For the smaller top cake I made a rich chocolate cake, using the recipe that I make chocolate cupcakes from . I put strawberry buttercream in the middle of it.
Then it was time for the fondant covering. To make the fondant stick to the cake, you need to cover it ( the cake!) in a syrup, easiest way is to take some jam and melt it, then paint it over the cake. Let it cool, then cover in fondant.
Here it is with the flowers and the topper on. Oh and some butterflies!
The finished cake looked like this.
I was really pleased with it. Ali loved it, and that's the important part!