Monday, 7 April 2014

Chocolate party - Alpine village cake

Sophie's 8th birthday party was all about chocolate (see my previous post here). The obvious choice for a cake was an all out choco-tastic creation but no cakes I found online inspired me. I have learnt from previous years that if the cake isn't particularly creative I feel cheated and disassisfied with the end product so I needed to come up with something I could really get my creative teeth in to. Cue Alpine village cake.
cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house
I don't know where this idea sprang from and I couldn't find any similar cakes to what was in my head so I had to build it as I went along. First piece of inspiration came from the Lakeland's fairy tale village moulds and I used this to make chocolate houses. Using milk, dark and white chocolate, I poured melted chocolate into each part of the moulds for mix and match houses. Sadly I didn't do a very good job of tempering the chocolate and all but the dark chocolate rooves bloomed, but actually it didn't notice once all the other decorations were on and the chocolate still tasted good!

I had also collected a selection of chocolate sprinkles, hearts, jazzies, pebbles and other bits along the way which all got put to good use. I ended up baking one rectangular sponge and two 9" circular ones (chocolate sponges of course) and layering them for a staggered mountain slope sort of effect.
cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house

I knew I wanted to a stream across the cake and that idea developed into a babbling mountain stream ending in a lake. I mixed two colours of blue fondant together, but didn't totally mix them so there was some marbling still. This ended up looking fab and I finished off the stream with some sugar sprinkles I had left over from the Octonauts cake I made earlier this year.
cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house
I had the mountain stream coming out of a chocolate pebble and I edged the mountain lake with some more of the chocolate pebbles and some of the small chocolate sprinkles. The finishing touch for the lake was some piping gel (something new for me to play with) which I spread across the lake for a water effect. This worked fantastically and I will definitely be playing with this again another time.
cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house

cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house

cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house
The strange indentations on the picture of the plain green covered cake above were deliberate! They turned into a footpath from the top house, linking it to the house on the mid-levels and I added some orange chocolate Matchmakers to provide some steps for the little chocolate people I added right at the end (sadly no photos of the cake with these little guys on) to get down to the lake and their friends in the bottom house!  
cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house
cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate housecake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate housecake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house
The finishing touch was to add literally a hundred plus fondant flowers in lots of bright colours, Sophie's name and a number eight candle placed behind the silver Happy Birthday.
cake, alpine village, chocolate, chocolate house
For the first time Sophie had very definite ideas as to how she wanted the cake but I couldn't really understand or translate some of these into reality. Thankfully, she was very happy with the finished cake so all was good in the Snowballs house.

© 2014 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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