Super Hero fair entry

Last month I made a super hero cake for my husband’s boss’s son. It consisted of Batman on the top layer and Spider-Man on the bottom. It was very simple and the little boy loved it and it was well received at the party.

I had so much fun doing that small cake that I decided I wanted to make a bigger one for the Solano Fair.

I made a Hulk fist out of Rice Krispie treats and covered it in fondant and then shaped it from there. It is the top piece and is “smashing” through the 2nd spider man layer. That sits on top of batman which rests on Superman.

The cake isn’t quite finished. I still have to do some finishing touch ups and find a display board. When I took this photo the Superman logo was starting to slip so it looks a little off. It’s currently pulled off of the cake and resting flat to finish drying.

20130724-232629.jpg

Recent cakes

Cake business has been slow.  I’ve made cinnamon rolls for a few clients, but not real big cake orders.  I had entered a cake in the Dixon May Fair, but then realized that they were due the day that we were in Reno for a big rabbit convention so we scratched our entries.

I’ve gotten to make 2 big milestone cakes over the past month.  One was for my neighbor’s daughter who turned the big 18.

nat

It was a 1/2 sheet chocolate cake filled and dirty iced with buttercream.  I covered it with fondant and airbrushed it teal.  I then cut out zebra stripes out of chocolate fondant and attached them to the cake.  The birthday message are fondant letters held in place with toothpicks.

Yesterday I made a graduation cake for the same girl. Again, 1/2  sheet chocolate with buttercream icing.

gradcake

This is also 4-H’s 100th year in California.  Solano Co 4-H had a centennial barbeque at Hall Park in Dixon, behind the Dixon May Fairgrounds.  We had it the Saturday night of the fair and had a good turnout of alumni and current 4-H members.  I was asked to provide the dessert.  I didn’t want to have to deal with a big cake and then having to pack a knife and something to serve it with, so I decided to make about 150 cupcakes and ice them green and white and lay them out in the shape of the 4-H clover.

4h

Yes, the upper right hand ‘H’ is short.  One of  my white cupcakes fell on the ground and I had no extra so I had to make due.

Solano Co Fair is coming up end of July and early August.  I have a super hero birthday cake entered so my next post will be about that.  My daughter is entering barnyard cake pops.

 

1 year ago…

Crabby’s Cakes is 1 year old today!

I know I have not been blogging as much.  Unfortunately that is because I haven’t been making any new cakes or baked goods.   I had a couple of leads on wedding cakes, but because of the venues the weddings were being held at they were not allowed any outside vendors.

So I’ve been keeping busy with my 4-Hers.  I have a Jr Leader this year who came into my project with experience from the Wilton Classes she had taken at Michael’s.  She’s doing a really good job applying her knowledge to teach the other members.  Our last meeting I had her teach the others how to make roses and I think she realized how much patience you need as an instructor/leader when others get frustrated and want to give up.

Dixon May Fair is coming up in 3 short months.  I’m thinking about entering another wedding cake just for fun.  Last year I took Best of Division and that post can be found here.

Merry Christmas

I would like to take this moment to wish all of my readers a very Merry Christmas.

I’ve been flying under the radar a little bit while I recover from my injuries sustained in my last wreck, but wanted to share a very quick and easy recipe if you were looking for something to take as a last minute snack to a get together.

“Christmas Crack”
1 box of Rice Chex cereal
1 box of Golden Grahams cereal
1/2 a bag of pretzel sticks
1 bag of slivered almonds
3 sticks (1 1/2 cups) of butter
2 cups sugar
2 cups corn syrup

Mix the cereals, pretzels and almonds in a large bowl.
Cook the butter, sugar and corn syrup to the soft ball stage (about 128 degrees F)
Pour over the cereal mixture and mix until mostly covered. Spread out on cookie sheets to cool.
Crack into pieces and serve.
Enjoy!

Boom Boom *POW*

I should always always always listen to my gut.

Northern California has been getting pounded by storms since Thursday.

Friday morning as I’m shooing my daughter out the door to get into the car to go to school my gut was telling me “ya know, there’s lousy weather, people are slip-sliding everywhere on the roads, maybe you should just stay home”.  Oh how I wish I had listened.

I dropped my daughter off at school with no incident.  I leave the school and work my way back on to Interstate 680 to come back home.  I’m on on the interstate for 2 mins and BAM!!!  Rear ended by a mid-size pickup that locked up his brakes and slammed right into me.  Some of you know I am all too familiar with this situation.  I was in a similar wreck last year that ultimately ended my dispatch career and prompting me to start up Crabby’s Cakes.

Luckily this time I was not at a dead stop, but still took quite a hit.  I was in my husband’s car this time and the back end is all banged up.  I think insurance will probably total it out.

So begins the weeks of chiropractic appts to try and manage my pain.  I went to Kaiser to get checked out that same day and they never bothered to do a full exam nor do xrays so I’m not relying on them to fix me.  My right hip is pretty jacked and am using a cane to get around.  Sigh.  Such is life.

I guess the point of this post is to say that I cannot take orders until further notice.  😦

Rainbow Cake

My husband comes home from work a couple of weeks ago and says he might have an order for me from one of his bosses.  Boss?  I have to make a cake for his boss that he JUST started working for a month ago?  Eeek!

The following day as we were on our way home from the Grand National Stock Show at Cow Palace in San Francisco I got an email from the boss’s wife describing the theme of they party for their soon-to-be-6-year-old daughter along with how many people they were expecting, etc.  She was having a rainbow fairy party and what kind of cake could I come up with to match the theme?

I remember coming across a picture on Pinterest awhile back of an awesome rainbow cake.  Those that follow cake boards on Pinterest may recognize it…

They liked the idea and gave me permission to proceed.  I would use the gumballs as borders and leave the top blank so that I could write Happy Birthday.

I baked off all of the layers and figured it would be “cake” to finish.  Hmm.  When you stack a cake 6 layers high it HAS to be reinforced some way to keep it from leaning and toppling right over.  This I knew so with the hubby’s help we inserted some dowels after I got the cake trimmed and dirty iced.

I decided to use strips of fondant to do the rainbow effect up the side of the cake instead of the ropes.  My fondant was not cooperating with me (that’s what I get for using cheap fondant!) to do the ropes so I cut a bunch of strips and airbrushed them.  That was a bad idea.  I was getting color on my fingers when putting the airbrushed strips on the cake and even though I was washing my hands in between strips, I was still transferring other colors onto the other strips which just made a huge mess. I removed a bunch of the cross colored strips and decided to step away from it for the night as I was beyond frustrated.  I’d brainstorm a way how to fix it to where the colors wouldn’t run and finish it up in the morning

Sunday morning arrives – the cake was due to be delivered to Concord at 11:30.   I got up early and went into the kitchen.  The cake had sunk about 1/4″ so the dowels we had put in to support it were poking out the top.  The weight of the cake had also made some of the bottom bulge out a bit.  Oh no, what do I do???  With the help of the hubby, we took out the dowels.  I very very very carefully shifted the cake over back to where it was upright and had new dowels cut (and more of them) and reinserted them into the cake.  Much better.

I cut a bunch of white strips of fondant and put them on the cake.  My idea overnight was the just paint the color on the strips after they were already applied to the cake.  While that was time consuming it worked out SO much better.  I adhered the gumballs to the borders and wrote the message on the top.  I still wasn’t that happy with it, but we are our own worst critics right?

Next goal was to get it transported to Concord in one piece.  Hubby drove, I carried the cake in a box on my lap.  All is well until we are pulling up to our destination and I look into the box and see half of the gumballs on the bottom had fallen off and were now rolling around freely in the box.  I was mortified, but there was nothing I could do at that point.

We met up with the wife, who seemed like a very nice lady.  She seemed to like the cake despite my apologies for the wayward gumballs and the fact that it was starting to lean again.  That made me feel a little better, however the cake still had to go from Concord to Lafayette to Alameda.  We put the cake in the back of her car and I gave her some last minute instructions for re-adhering the loose gumballs and for slicing the cake.  I was still on edge as we left to come back home as I was worried about the cake falling over in the back of her car.

Yesterday she sent me an email with the following pictures.

Not only did the cake make it, but everyone even seemed to enjoy it.

If I ever get the opportunity to make a cake like this again I will have to find ways to reinforce it better

 

Catching up

Since it’s been awhile since I’ve posted I thought I’d write a catch up blog.
I haven’t been super busy with cakes during my absence, but here are a couple that I did over the past couple of months.
I entered another wedding cake in a fair – the Solano County Fair held in Vallejo, CA.  It was another basic 4 tier wedding cake covered in fondant.  I made some fondant swags to drape down the sides of the cake.  I also made a few hibiscus-y type flowers.  They weren’t true hibiscus, but they were easy and fun to make.

Unlike the cake I entered in the Dixon May Fair, I actually had some competition with this one.  I ended up not only winning my division, but took Best of Show as well.

 

Moving on…

An old friend of mine approached me awhile back to do her daughters 4th birthday cake.  We later decided on Ariel from The Little Mermaid.  I baked off a 1/2 sheet white cake with raspberry filling.  I drew Ariel and Flounder on some parchment paper with royal icing and let them set up then transferred them directly to the cake.  They loved it!

So that’s basically all I’ve done the past couple of months.  I’ve made several batches of cinnamon rolls and salted caramels, but the cake business has been a little on a slow side.