Sunday, January 23, 2011

Zebra Cake

So, my daughter's Sweet 16th birthday was coming up and she decided on an animal print theme.  So we went with a "Wild Thing Sweet 16 Party."  I wanted her to have a cool cake, but the local grocery store bakeries didn't have what I wanted, and I didn't want to spend a fortune to have it made by a real cake decorator. So, I did a little research and came up with a plan to have both the inside and the outside of the cake have zebra stripes! I know - cool, right?! Here is the process for my inside and out zebra cake.

First I needed the cake layers. I found many references on the web on how to make a cake that when you cut into it looks like zebra stripes. Click here to see the process of pouring alternate colors of cake batter into the pan to make zebra stripes. For my cakes I just used boxed cake mixes - white and devils food.

Assembly of ingredients
I found that one box of white and one box of devils food made enough batter to make one 10 inch round layer and one 6 inch round layer plus about 9 cupcakes with the leftover batter.  I did the whole process twice to create all my layers.

Batter poured into pan
Cupcakes made from extra batter
After I baked and cooled the cake layers, I removed them from the pans and put them on cardboard cake rounds.  I needed the cakes to be absolutely level so that the final product would look, well not crooked. The cake decorating supply department had this really cool cake topper gadget for evenly removing the rounded cake tops.

Man I totally love that thing! Here is my level cake layer:

Then I put chocolate frosting between the 10 inch layers to make my cake base, and the 6 inch layers to make my cake top.

Notice the big chunk of cake that tore out of the bottom of one of my 10 inch layers when I removed it from the pan.  I didn't freak out about it, I just filled it in with my buttercream frosting when I did my crumb coat.

See, you can't even tell.  Now a person could make the buttercream to do this smooth crumb coat, but I decided to save myself some time and purchased two containers of cake decorating frosting.  I allowed the crumb coat to harden uncovered in the refrigerator overnight.

Then rolled out the fondant and covered the cake.  I watched this YouTube video to figure out how to do it.

I trimmed off the excess with my pizza cutter.

And used this handy little fondant smoother to "polish" and smooth.

I added some lime green food color gel to some more fondant and did the same thing to my top layer.

Here are my top and base all ready to earn their zebra stripes and giraffe dots.

Before I stacked the layers or decorated the lower layer with stripes, I marked the top of the lower tier by tracing around the 6 inch pan base with a knife tip.  This left me with an indentation in the fondant showing where the top tier would be placed later. I also measured and cut 4 cake dowels and pushed them into the cake within the marked circle below to keep the cake from collapsing once the top got put on - sorry, I forgot to take a picture of this.

I watched this awesome YouTube video on how to make a fondant zebra stripe cake.  I just used white fondant and mixed in black food color gel since my cake decorating department isn't large enough to carry pre made black fondant.

I then covered the top layer in black giraffe spots.  The real deal would've been yellow with brown spots, but the lime green and black matched her party colors better.  Then I made a bow out of hot pink colored fondant. Here are the final elements of the cake.

Then I stacked the tiers.

Put the pink ribbon on. The bow still had to dry for 24 hours, so it's not on the cake yet.

Sent out invitations.

And has us a grrrrrrreat party!

Oh, and here's a picture of two of the slices (trust me it's hard to cut into the cake when you put so much time into it).

Yay - the zebra stripes go all the way through the cake!!


Janie said...

isn't youtube/google/blogger awesome!!

Raena said...

Holy Cow you are amazing!!!!! You need to open a shop or something! I am always amazed at the things you do. I wish I lived closer so that you could rub off on me a little bit more. What fun we could have while the kids are at school!!

jessi scott said...

I realize this is forever after you originally posted this....
But, was wondering when you put in the dowels to support the upper cake, are they inside the smaller one & refrosted so they are hidden or...? I'm about to attempt a cake like this and am wanting to make sure I have the support right. :) Thanks!

TexasMom said...

The 4 dowels are inside the lower tier only and level with the top of the white fondant. The are within the circle of undecorated(no zebra stripes)cake. The top layer was not very heavy, so this was plenty of support and the layers did not shift. Hope that helps - and good luck!!!

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