Creepy Cauldron Cake by Mr Baker
Halloween is the one holiday when our imaginations can truly run wild! And this is even more true of Halloween cakes. As Halloween cakes become more and more popular, it really is the perfect opportunity to create a fabulous cake to amaze your friends and family or to wow your cake clients. When Hayley and Michael of Fabricake Ltd got in touch to ask me to create a Halloween tutorial for them, I was thrilled. I am happy to present my first guest tutorial for Fabricake, my colourful and fun Creepy Cauldron Cake!
Three 7” round cakes
Filling of your choice
White chocolate ganache (made with 900g of white chocolate and 284ml of Elmlea double cream)
Red airbrush colour
Black airbrush colour
Sugarflair Extra White gel colour
Sugarflair Extra Black gel colour
Water or edible glue
Small rolling pin x2
Foam drying pads
Small offset spatula
A selection of paintbrushes
Sharp kitchen knife
Cornflour dusting pouch
Cake steamer (optional)
Small clean sponge (optional)
Begin by slicing your cakes into 1” layers. You will need five in total.
Take two layers and carve them so that the top has a diameter of 6” and the bottom is still at 7”. I used a 6” pastry cutter as a guide.
Repeat this for a further two layers of cake.
Layer your cakes, as per the picture, with one additional uncarved layer in the middle.
Fill with your choice of filling. I used vanilla buttercream and strawberry jam.
Crumb coat the cake using your white chocolate ganache and place in the refrigerator to chill.
Give the cake a second coat of ganache and return to the refrigerator to chill for a second time.
Leave your finished board to dry, ideally overnight.
While this is chilling, take some of your orange sugar paste and roll out a variety of different shaped balls. Using the palm of your hand, roll these into thin cone shapes and then shape into flames. Try and vary the size and shape of these.
You may also wish to shape some additional flames that are flat against the board – these can be stuck flush to the side of the cake.
Next, take some purple sugarpaste.
Using approximately 1/3 of a packet, shape into a long tapering tentacle.
Shape this over a small rolling pin dusted with cornflour (or similarly shaped item) and set aside to dry slightly.
Repeat to make a second tentacle.
Take your black sugarpaste (I used 1.5kg for the whole cake).
Roll this out on a surface dusted with cornflour.
Spray or brush your cake with cooled boiled water.
Cover the cake with the black sugarpaste and smooth the top and the top of the sides as quickly as possible.
Working your way around the cake, begin to smooth the sugarpaste against the cake in a downward motion to avoid trapping any air. Trim the excess using a sharp knife and use your acetate smoothers to ensure that the icing is as smooth as possible.
Tip: If the icing is too tacky from being in the fridge, you can dust it with cornflour to stop your smoothers sticking to the sugarpaste.
Set the cake aside and wrap the rest of your black sugarpaste securely in cling film or a sandwich bag, reserving a small amount. Mix this with your white sugarpaste to make a dark grey. It doesn’t matter if this is slightly marbled as this can create a pleasing effect.
Take your 12” cake drum. Honestly, it seems a shame to cover this gorgeous colour – so feel free to leave this uncovered if you would prefer.
Spray or brush your board with cooled boiled water and then roll out your grey icing. Place it over the board and use your smoother to ensure that it is securely attached. Trim any excess with a sharp knife using only a downwards motion.
Run your hands around the edge of the board to smooth any lumps and bumps.
Take a clean ruler or a large edge scraper and use it to mark tile-like impressions into the icing. You can follow go over these with your Dresden tool to make them deeper if you wish.
Screw up a small piece of tin foil and impress it into the icing, creating texture.
Optional: Use your Dresden tool to make additional marks to create the effect of wear and tear on the floor.
Set the board aside to dry (ideally overnight) and take some black Flower & Modelling Paste. Roll out a long sausage shape (roll the sausage under your smoother to remove finger marks and ensure an even thickness).
Divide the sausage in three and wrap each one in a circle (I used a tub of dusting powder to ensure an accurate shape).
With the final third, roll it slightly thinner and divide it in two. Shape each one into semi-circles. Take two food-safe cocktail sticks and divide these in half. Using water or edible glue, stick half of each stick into each of the four exposed ends. Set these aside to dry.
Tip: This is an ideal time to leave your cake to dry overnight if you have time.
Prepare your work area for airbrushing.
Fill your airbrush with black airbrush colour and use it to pick out the edges of your board’s ‘tiles’.
Lightly mist the rest of the board to highlight your texture and set aside to dry.
Step 33a & 33b:
Clean your airbrush and fill it with red airbrush colour. Lightly spray the base of your flames and set aside to dry.
Take your baby pink sugarpaste and roll out two long thin ‘tentacles’.
Brush your purple ‘tentacles’ with cooled boiled water or edible glue and stick the pink to them, trimming the length to match.
Use your Dresden tool to impress the pink sugarpaste, as per the picture.
Roll small balls of baby pink sugarpaste and stick these to the tentacles and then impress your ball tool in a rotating motion to shape these into suckers. To avoid the ball tool sticking, keep a pouch of muslin-wrapped cornflour nearby and use it to dust the tool.
Using a mix of pink and purple petal dusts, pick out the details on the tentacles.
Next, marble together some lime green sugarpaste with some purple and roll it out.
Brush the top of your cake with cooled boiled water and lay on the marbled sugarpaste. Trim this, leaving 1/2 and inch of black around the outside.
Roll out a thick black sausage using some more of your black sugarpaste.
Place the sausage around the edge of the top of the cake blending the seam at the back.
Steam your cake to remove any excess cornflour and finger marks.
Step 44: [Optional Step]
When I was offered the opportunity to use the new dragéekiss™ on this cake, my answer was obviously going to be yes! Obviously, you can omit these next few steps if you wish, but I wanted to have a play with the latest must-have tool!
Step 45: [Optional Step]
Unpack your swanky new dragéekiss™, taking note of the handy funnel!
Step 46: [Optional Step]
Use a cookie cutter to mark a suitably Halloweeny image on the side of your cake. I used a large star, but anything would work. Use the dragéekiss™ to fill the shape you have marked out using black dragées.
Step 47: [Optional Step]
Finally, outline the shape using silver dragées.
Time for my favourite bit! Assembling it all together!
Brush your cauldron handles using cooled boiled water or edible glue.
Stick these to your cake, pushing the cocktail sticks directly into the cake (please ensure you make anyone eating the cake aware that they are there).
Carefully place your tentacles into position, using cooled boiled water or edible glue to secure them to the top and sides of the cake.
Take some more lime green sugarpaste and roll lots of balls of varying sizes.
Place this all over the top of your cauldron.
Roll two larger additional balls of white sugarpaste and place these amongst the green balls. These will be your eyeballs. Finish these by painting on irises, pupils and red blood vessels.
Roll large uneven balls of your black sugarpaste and place these around the base of your cauldron. Using a small sponge or large paintbrush, roughly paint these with a combination of your black and white gel colours, mixed with a little vodka.
Place your flames in and around these large coals, adding more smaller black balls of ‘coal’. Paint these also using the black and white gel colours, mixed with a little vodka. Finally, attach a complimentary ribbon around the edges of your board to give it that professional-looking finishing touch.
And there you have it, your very own creepy cauldron cake, just in time for Halloween! I do hope you have enjoyed this tutorial, created exclusively for Fabricake Ltd and using just some of the FRIGHTfully fabulous products they have available in store.
Don’t forget to share your results with me on social media if you have a go!
Rob is an award-winning baker & cake artist and regularly posts recipes, tutorials and blogs about all things cake.
You can find his site at blog.mrbakerscakes.co.uk
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