around here at birthday time, it's ALWAYS ALL ABOUT the CAKE.
i was cruisin' around facebook and saw this cute little mud pool piggy cake thingy and my daughter perked right up and said she'd been wanting to learn how to make fondant anyway. (we watch too much Cake Boss.) this seemed like a perfect opportunity.
anyway, it turned out fantastic.
i looked up some fondant and modeling clay recipes and i am never thrilled if i have to use confectioner's sugar or corn syrup. we settled on trying a recipe for modeling chocolate substituting honey for corn syrup in the traditional recipes.
most of the "experts" also specified that if i wanted to color the chocolate, i should use paste colors which i didn't have access to. i used the standard liquid for the pink the color of the pigs, but it was only a few drops and it didn't seem to cause a problem.
modeling chocolate recipe4 Tbsp raw honey
1 bag (9 oz) of white chocolate chips
place the chocolate chips in a glass bowl and place on top of a sauce pot which contains some steaming (moderately boiling) water.
stir until well melted.
add food coloring and continue to stir.
remove from heat.
add honey and stir a bit more until combined.
cool a bit, so as not to heat up plastic wrap.
turn "dough" out onto plastic wrap and smash flat with plastic wrap.
wrap up and place into fridge for about 4 hours to overnight.
we used this recipe and found that it was a bit hard to work with, so i reheated and added another Tbsp of honey. it blended well and it didn't curdle or separate. we just had to put it back in the fridge for awhile. you might have to work with the amount of honey a bit to get it the right pliability (is that even a word?), but if it gets a bit too soft, put it back in the fridge for a bit and pull it out again when it hardens. also, you might try using a cold cutting board or cookie sheet to use as your table top so that it doesn't heat up to quickly.
for this beautiful cake, i swiped a GRAND recipe from one of the better recipe sites and i have officially claimed it as my own. LOL (the grandkids will never know.)
here's the link to give proper credit.
here's the recipe...in case that link ever vanishes.
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons baking soda
- 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
- 2 cups sugar
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 cup hot coffee
- 1 cup milk
- 2 large eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 325°F.
In a large mixing bowl, sift together dry ingredients. Add oil, coffee and milk and mix at medium speed for 2 minutes. Add eggs and vanilla and beat 2 more minutes. Expect batter to be thin.
Pour into a 9" x 13" greased and floured pan or 2- 9" round pans. Bake 9 x 13 pan for about 45 minutes or 9" pans for about 30 minutes. Cool in pans for about 15 minutes and then cool completely on racks.
- Frost as desired.
for the mud, i used a simple chocolate ganache...the recipe is under my donut recipe at this link.
we decided to really spruce it up with some canned cherry pie filling crammed between the layers. this isn't a necessary step but it sure made it taste good.
for the barrel, we used, standard, toxic, get-em-from-walmart-for-a-dollar, wafer cookies. we "glued" these to the cake with a bit of ganache and then tied a cord around when we were finished for extra support. once the cord comes off and you start cutting, it does get a bit flimsy, but nobody complained.