It's all a little fuzzy now, but made some modeling chocolate (white) way ahead of time. Was super easy using 16oz white chocolate block and 7 Tbs. light corn syrup. Preheated the oven to (I think) 225, then turned it off, and placed the entire block (and cardboard tray) in the oven to sit & warm. Put James to bed, and when I got it up it was perfectly melted! Typically I mess up with too much heat...doesn't matter if it's the microwave or stove top...it seizes up and turns into a big, grainy, unusable wad. I mixed in the syrup, placed it in the fridge, and took this as a good sign. That was at the beginning of the week. The next day I began sculpting Sponge Bob characters. Wasn't too hard. Reminded me exactly of Fimo, or Scuply...can only work with it for short periods, bcuz it warms up too much and starts to distort when sculpting other features. The next day, I bumped the tray...and all the pieces shattered on the floor. Fixed them, and that evening James got a hold of the tray, and did the same thing!
Finally got them altogether and finished on Friday night. Had just put James to bed, and was excited to sit down and paint them all. Made myself some coffee, got out all my gel food-colors, and brushes, and....................total disaster! The color just rolled around on the surface. I'm an artist, so...when I say I tried everything...I did. I tried thinning the color with gin, and oil, dry brushing, etc. Nothing worked. They looked terrible. Was just too much fat in the chocolate for anything to stick. I guess powdered food color is what's needed, but I didn't have any. Holding back much disipointment...I decided to scrap the sculpted characters, and re-think the entire cake. I still had the fondant.
My dad and step-mom arrived the same evening, so luckily I was distracted. I started the cake Saturday morning....remembering all I had was white, self-rising flour, and A.P. whole wheat. I went with the organic, whole wheat, and a lemon flavored cake, with lemon curd filling. The cakes didn't cook all the way through (first attempt), and after trying to rebake them, etc. I scrapped it, and started from scratch with the self-rising. Second attempt was fine, just left out the baking powder, and soda. I made sure the cakes were completely cool first. I always rush, and then the frosting starts to slide off! I decided not to use the fondant. My dad thought it was gross. :Sad: And...I really didn't see the point. I have some piping tips and just thought I'd do a more traditional cake/decoration. I guess the frosting was too stiff, and it tore up the cake some while doing the main frosting. My dad rescued me, bcuz I was almost in tears. LoL. I thinned out the frosting just a smidge for the decorative icing, but then it was too thin, and wouldn't hold shape! By then the cake was a mess!!!! It was past the point of frustration...now it was just silly-ridiculous! Might as well made it with two left hands, and I'm right-handed! James himself probably would have done a better job!
All in all it looked terrible. The cake tasted pretty good, the filling was too sour, but the frosting was nice and buttery, and not too sweet. Edible, and James liked it, so I have a year to practice!!! Patience, lots of love, and a sense of humor got us through this birthday laughing. Except for this one small incident with the birthday candle!
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