Mrs Claus Cake
You will needFor the Cake • two 15cm (6in) cakes • one 10cm (4in) cake to decorate • 25cm (10in) round cake drum • 10cm (4in) cake card • 12.5cm (5in) cake card • 4 bubble tea straws or dowels • ganache or buttercream • white sugarpaste • black sugarpaste Equipment • carving knife • small knife • ball tool • flat paintbrush • soft dry brush • Dresden tool • cocktail stick or scriber • clear alcohol or water • edible glue • red food gel • yellow food gel • brown food gel • ivory food gel • pink petal dust
Covering and assembling the cake
- Cover the cake drum in a layer of white sugarpaste. Use a cocktail stick or scriber to mark uneven lines for a wooden floor effect.
- Mix a little brown and yellow food gel with clear alcohol to make a light brown paint. Using a flat paintbrush, paint all over the board. Set aside to dry completely.
- Level and fill the two larger cakes with your chosen filling. Place the cake on the 12.5cm (5in) cake card, so it's easier to move the cake to the drum later on. I've used a card that won't be seen once the cake is carved.
- Place a 10cm (4in) round cake card in the centre of the cakes. This will be your guide to ensure the head will sit central.
Shaping and Decorating the Cake
- Using a sharp knife, carve the cake as shown. You need to make sure your cake is completely level at this stage or the entire cake could begin leaning later on. Be sure to keep any cake scraps, as you may need these later.
Push four bubble tea straws or dowels into the top of the cake, this will help support the head. If you do not add the straws, the cake can easily sink due to the weight.
- Using a clean pair of scissors, cut away the straws level with the top of the cake.
Coat the entire cake in buttercream or ganache and set aside.
Take the 10cm (4in) cake and place on the 10cm (4in) cake card.
Round the top edge of the cake using a sharp knife. If the cake isn’t high enough, add a few carved off cake scraps to the top to create a dome shape.
Coat the cake in buttercream or ganache. Set aside the cakes and colour a large portion of white sugarpaste with red food gel.
Cover the base section of the cake in red sugarpaste and mark a few lines to add texture to the dress. Place the cake on the finished cake drum.
For the head and face
- Colour a smaller portion of white sugarpaste with ivory food gel mixed with a tiny amount of red to create a skin tone. Cover the smaller cake in the ivory paste and place on top of the base cake. Apply with a little ganache, buttercream or royal icing.
Mark two eyes using a ball tool, a mouth using the Dresden tool (or cocktail stick) and add a nose by rolling a small oval shape and apply to the face as shown.
For the apron
- Make an apron by rolling a thin piece of white sugarpaste and cutting to the shape shown. Add a stitch mark and apply to the cake with a little water. Roll a thin belt using black sugarpaste and place above the apron. Make a little buckle by cutting a tiny square, with a smaller square cut out of the centre. Add a tiny piece in the centre to finish the buckle.
For the arms
To make the arms, form a piece of red sugarpaste into a sleeve shape, use a ball tool to open up the end so the hand will sit inside. To make the hand, flatten a ball of ivory sugarpaste and mark fingers using a Dresden tool. For the cuff detail, flatten a rope of white sugarpaste and wrap around the sleeve. Apply with a little water.
Attach the arms to the body using edible glue. Add one arm at a time, carefully holding the arm in place until it holds. This can take a few minutes. Be sure not to add too much edible glue or it will take longer to hold. If the arms do not stick quick enough, push a few cocktail sticks just underneath the heaviest part of the arms to hold them up until they dry.
The finishing touches
- Add a white ruffle around the neck, applying with a little water. Also, add detail to the bottom of the dress using a flattened rope of white sugarpaste.
Using a very small amount of pink petal dust, add rosy cheeks to the face with a dry soft brush.
Roll two small balls of black sugarpaste and place in the eye sockets, then add two thin eye lashes to each eye. Apply with a little water.
Roll a thick circle of white sugarpaste and place over the head. Next, using a ball tool, make waves to create the effect of curly hair.
Roll two tiny balls of red sugarpaste and apply to the top of the head. Cut two small holly leaves and apply behind the berries.
The cake is done! If you like, why not add additional details to the board, such as candy canes, presents, holly leaves or some festive sprinkles.
If you want to take your Mrs Claus cake one step further, add some shading using either an airbrush or a light dusting of black petal dust. If you're using petal dust, be sure to work very lightly and to build it up gradually.