Wednesday, January 20

The Castle Cake

Ah, the castle cake. Yes, it was all my idea. I suggested it, knowing Eva would respond with an enthusiastic YES. But, I was looking for a challenge, looking to try something new so it truly was a win-win situation. I only started kicking myself after I realized I'd have to frost the damn thing. I have zero skills in the cake frosting department. Zero. And let me tell you, this cake required frosting skills.I'm restraining myself from criticizing how it turned out. I so badly want to point out how lop sided, lumpy and, well, homely it is. But I won't. And I won't because Eva helped me to see it as it should be seen. A lesson I hope I remember.
Since it's inception, Eva has been in love with this cake. When it was just a stack of brown squares she declared it the most beautiful cake in the world. After I applied the crumb coat and the cake was just plain ugly she said it was the most perfect cake ever. And after I slathered it with vanilla frosting she yelled, "I LOVE my castle cake." Oh, it made me feel so good. It was so encouraging.
The magic really happened when the 3 of us girls began to adorn the cake. Their goal was to make it pretty. My goal was to cover up all the unsightly parts of the cake with anything I could get my hands on. About this time I realized the cake was not going to turn out like I had envisioned. But as I placed more and more candy on the cake and watched my girls do the same, I realized it didn't matter. My vision didn't matter. To the girls, to Eva, this was a perfect cake. It was big. It had silver candies. It had ice cream cones covered in sugar. It was a castle. They loved this cake. They were so proud of this cake. Then I saw what they saw. It was beautiful. It was special. It was our castle cake. It was homemade. It was wonky and charming and perfectly imperfect. It shouldn't look like anything other than what it did.

Cake Details:
:: I followed these directions.
:: It took 2 boxes of cake mix, 2 containers of frosting and 1 batch of icing.
:: The ice cream cones had uneven tops so I used kitchen shears to make them level (ish).
:: The ice cream cones are dipped in white chocolate and rolled in colored sugar crystals.
:: When leveling the cakes before frosting, cut more off than you think you should.
:: Freeze the cakes before attempting the crumb coat. I couldn't do this as my freezer is the size of a children's shoe box.
:: Buy an off-set spatula
:: I covered a cutting board with foil and a doily to use as the cake plate.
::I bought the snowflakes, fawns, silver trees and edible glitter here.
:: I bought the sugar mushrooms at the grocery store in Luxembourg.
:: If you try this cake, for goodness sake DO NOT use chocolate cake like I did. The crumbs are so much more noticeable.
:: There are sugar cubes and wafer cookies on it.
:: Have a stiff drink sitting next to you as you frost it.
:: I probably will never make another castle cake, but if you do I'd love to see it!I added a comment to the previous post with a more party details.


Dana said...

I know exactly what you mean! You can see my imperfectly perfect lopsided creation here --

My daughter was thrilled with this . . . absolutely thrilled.

This Girl loves to Talk said...

yes freezing helps soo much. Maybe refridgerate or freeze each layer separetly if you can't fit it into your freezer
I think it is a beautiful cake

It reminded me of our church's temple in Oakland California LOL

se7en said...

Love it!!!, Love the whole girly girly thing!!!

jojoebi-designs said...

it is the most perfect cake! and I am sure she will remember it for years to come, my mom always made us themed cakes. My brothers birthday is the same week as 3 of his classmates so they used to have one big joint party. My mom made the cakes one year, a fort for the boys and a fairy castle for the girls, she did like you, used squares as the base but used swiss rolls for turrets and silver doilys to make the towers, I am pretty sure it was wonky too but I don't remember it being wonky, just, so, so cool. So what is next...?

Lena said...

All I can say is that you are AMAZING! Great job! She will remember it forever.

Emily Malate said...

honestly, that is the coolest cake I've ever seen. It must've been Eva's dream cake!!

Needful Things said...

Love the cake! It's gorgeous - really.
She will remember it for years to come. :)

poppyart said...

Katy, it is beautiful... have a look at my ben10 (bought) cake and the cupcakes i iced for the boys' birthdays. i am ashamed! i just found to too overwhelming to tackle making cakes after christmas this year. my goal for next year will be to make them both a cake as normal.

Henley on the Horn said...

How absolutely GORGEOUS!

Tara said...

Bravo Katy! The cake is beautiful and I so love the transformation of it in your eyes. What a great image for the day - wonky and perfectly imperfect - that describes life quite well!

likeschocolate said...

The cake is beautiful! I love the little mushrooms and the sugarcone trees! What is important is how special she must have felt that day to have a cake made by her mom with so much love!

Anonymous said...

It is a beautiful cake. And your girls will treasure the memory of decorating it with you. Much more important that having a perfect cake. Glad you were able to squelch the negative around them and just celebrate the process.

suddenly sahm said...

Katy, that's amazing! What a beautiful cake and party. Speechless!

Erin M. said...

I love, love, love your cake. What an adventure! I'm sure both girls will remember it for a long time to come.

Juleskis said...

WOW, Katy! That cake is spectacular...are you kidding? It is on earth could you not see it. I am way impressed...Riley would LOVE that! Happy Birthday to sweet EVA!

Monkey's Mama said...

I think it's awesome - and I'm not under 10!!

Frogs Mom said...

Found your blog through the Muffin Monday post on Odeedoh.

I just had to say that I have tears in my eyes reading your daughter's reaction to the cake.

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