Friday, 29 March 2013

Cupcake birthday party - the giant cupcake cake

For Sophie's birthday I made a giant cupcake for her cake. This was the first time I have made one of these so I wasn't sure how to go about it and what it would turn out like. After browsing the internet I came across two tutorials on YouTube that I really liked: the shabby chic one was gorgeous but I decided was more suited for a grown-up cake rather than a seven year old; so the chocolate finger star one one was my inspiration (minus the chocolate fingers).
I baked a Victoria sponge in the Eddingtons Giant Cupcake pan (on loan from my niece). This didn't come with instructions but the people writing reviews on Amazon had given useful information on what to do. 
The advice was that the top of the cupcake is shallower so cooks faster than the deeper bottom. Rather then risk spoiling the bottom half by opening the oven part way into baking to put the cake mixture in the top half, I decided to bake both parts separately. The bottom half took a four egg Victoria sponge mix (with a little left over for a couple of cupcakes) and took about 1 hour 30 minutes in my oven (which is quite a slow oven) at gas mark 4 and the top half took a three egg mixture (again with a little left over) and took just over 1 hour to cook. The very bottom of the bottom half was still very slightly soggy but I wouldn't have wanted to cook it for much longer as the top would have dried out too much.

I had to trim quite a bit from the top of the cupcake to fit onto the bottom of the cake (there was a lot of overhang before the trimming). I then buttercreamed the bottom half of the cake making sure I had enough in the ridges. I had decided I wanted to cover the bottom with bright pink fondant and so I rolled a long strip, wide enough to fit all the way around the cake. I cut a straight line along one long edge and then placed this straight edge along the bottom of the cake against the covered board. I then trimmed the ends to meet at the back of the cake and gently folded the fondant over the top of the base. I then worked the fondant into each of the ridges of the cake with the flat of my nail/finger tips, going round several times. After about three times round, the ridges stayed and looked like a cupcake case.

I added some more buttercream into the gap in the middle where the fondant folded over the bottom half of the cake and placed the top part of the cake on. I coloured up some buttercream turquoise (it wasn't meant to be so strong a colour but matched well with the invitations etc). I then piped stars all around the cake and added butterfly sprinkles and silver and pearl balls onto the peaks of the piped stars. I finished with a wire spray that I had made about a week earlier (to let the fondant harden) of stars and a number 7. This was the first time I have done wire sprays so I was pleased with how it came out. Next time I would only put one shape on each wire (I had tried two or three with this one and it made them a bit heavy) and have a few more wires. I fixed the wires into the cake using a posy pick but  this was a bit wide (I had to stuff it with fondant to fix the wires in) so next time I would use a plain old straw!
I finished off the cake by added Sophie (with little white butterflies stuck to each letter) and a matching turquoise ribbon to the board and silver happy birthday wording.
The giant cupcake didn't turn out as big as I expected but it was still a good size. We didn't cut it at the party as each of the girls got to take home the four cupcakes they had decorated, so we kept it for Sophie's actual birthday two days later. Lucky girl got to blow the candles out twice!

© 2013 Nicola Noble: Please observe the rules of copyright and blog etiquette. If you use my ideas or images, please link back to my blog. And do let me know - I'd love to take a look.

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