I finally did a naked cake! A friend requested a smash cake for a photo shoot and the naked wedding cakes were the inspiration. I went with a simple vanilla cake with some leftover italian meringue buttercream from a different cake (never waste a drop!). For some reason, the nice brown edge crumbled off the edges of my cake, which is what I needed for that nice "naked" look". I layered the frosting around the edges and had to very strategically scrape down in only certain areas, so I got less of the exposed cake than I would have liked. I decided to add some grooves to help hide how little "nakedness" there was. I used fresh flowers (Trader Joe's has the best!) and stuck them directly into the cake. The last step was to brush some of the petals with gold lustre dust for a bit of sparkle!
I recently had a friend commission a cake for her daughter's birthday and the theme was tacos! More specifically, it was the children's book "Dragons Love Tacos"! At first I thought maybe I would be super ambitious and do a sculpted cake, but lack of time (and confidence) got the better of me). I decided to just replicate the book cover, which still held a lot of challenging fondant work. The cake itself is pure chocolate (for 5 year old palates) and turned out a bit denser than I wanted, but still tasted great! Originally I wanted the edges to look like the pages of a book, so I put the top and sides on separately. Not the best idea because it was really hard to get clean lines and make sure the chocolate frosting was completely hidden. I also rolled my fondant too thin (because I don't like to taste too much of it) and ended up with several tears when I indented the lines for the pages. I used a tiny bit of gel dye mixed with water to "paint" the top before putting all the other fondant pieces on. I had to free-hand the dragon (terrifying!) and just used the end of my candy thermometer cover to cut out the circles for the tacos. I used store-bought writing icing for the "lettuce' in the tacos and then use straight gel color to paint the title. A little powdered sugar gave the mountains a little snow and voila! It came out a bit rougher than I'd hoped, but the birthday girl didn't seem to mind!