I was proud to be asked to bake a cake for our friends' baby's christening. They knew how they wanted the cake to look and gave me a couple of pictures to work from. This is the first time I've made something based on a design someone else has chosen and it was a nice challenge to work on something I wouldn't normally choose myself. I was tricky to just work from pictures without any instructions - but I think I did OK :)
Unfortunately I only have one of these tins, and even then only one would fit in our tiny oven, so I had to bake the two different layers separately. I haven't baked many large cakes in the oven of our house and didn't know there is a nasty hotspot and consequently the first tier didn't come out very evenly baked. I had to slice off quite a lot of cake to get it to sit flat so in the final cake there are only three layers instead of my usual four.
I started working on the decorations for this cake during the week so that they would be nice and dry by the time they were needed today. I used modelling paste to make the extremely cute teddy bear. He's essentially made of a ball for a body, another for a head and sausages for arms and legs. These modelling tools were great for shaping the ears, eyes and the cute seam down the middle of the head. Couldn't you just hug him? (Or bite his head off?!)
I also used modelling paste for the stars. I simply cut these out of paste and inserted some florists wire which is normally used for the stems of sugar flowers. Unsurprisingly modelling paste was also used for the building blocks and cut out 'JESSICA' letters.
The stars and hearts were all dusted with edible lustre to give them a nice pearlised sheen.
I'm well out of practice at royal icing lettering so I'm pleased with how well these letters came out. Next time I'll be sure that I mix up a colour that has more contrast to the icing so you can better see my handiwork.
The cake was extremely well received by all! I'm quite proud of it - even if I do say so myself :D
Now to relax and treat myself to a well deserved gin and tonic.