Wednesday, February 06, 2013

A happy Harry Potter birthday

So after Christmas and the werewolf cake, I decided I was going to take it easy for a bit and just focus on some simpler things. That didn't last very long, in part because I have a very difficult time saying 'no' and I really like Harry Potter. That is how I ended up doing Harry Potter cupcakes and a cake in the past week. 
I kept the cupcakes simple as it was a very busy week. I used modelling paste (half fondant, half gumpaste) for the decorations. The striped scarf was made by 'gluing' red strips to a piece of yellow modelling paste and then running it through a pasta machine. 
I made two little cauldrons and filled them with bright green frosting so that two of the cupcakes could hold candles. I also did Harry faces, lighting bolts and glasses although I think that without arms the glasses look a little like quidditch goggles.

Next was the cake. I wanted again to keep the design simple and cute since it was for a children's party.
The characters are made from modelling paste. The face details are using edible marker and the stripes on the ties painted on using gel paste mixed with a bit of vodka.

To make the hair, I used an extruder. For Hermione I twisted each strand for the curls and attached using edible sugar glue. The modelling paste dried very quickly so I didn't have to worry about the curls coming undone after attaching them.

For Ron, I made him looking a little worried as that is typically how he was throughout the series. When I was attaching the hair, I got a little extra sugar glue on the side of his forehead. I didn't bother trying to clean it off as it actually worked by looking like a little bit of perspiration (although I suppose that it's not very appetizing for a cake, but I've done worse!)

My husband felt that from a side profile, Ron looked like he was mad at Harry Potter. This seemed to work, especially considering the last couple of books. Maybe Ron is just tired of Harry getting all of the attention or he has a horcrux hidden somewhere on him.

The wand was made using gumpaste. I used a few different shades of brown twisted together to make a wood-like colour and used dresden tool to make a wood grain effect. I then painted it with brown gel paste mixed with vodka.

Other details for the cake included gumpaste glasses. This one took two attempts as I broke the first pair.

The scarf was made from fondant. I roughly measured each piece, lined them up alternating the colours and then cut along the sides so it all looked like one piece. Then I placed it on the cake with sugar glue and carefully trimmed any pieces that had stretched when transferring to the cake.

I made a parchment scroll out of modelling paste on which to write 'Happy Birthday'. I did not have time to cut out letters in the Harry Potter font, so I freehanded it using edible marker. It actually didn't turn out too bad considering I left this to the last task and with the time crunch, my hand was shaking.

Unfortunately with time limitations, my photography was not optimal. I really should have  used a flash. To give an antique look to the cake, I  used a large brush to dust the cake, the board and the edges of the parchment with a mix of brown petal dust, gold and apricot lustre dust. It did not really show up in the pictures. Perhaps I should have used a greater proportion of brown petal dust, or just used a flash. You'll just have to trust me that it looked a bit antique.
I really enjoyed making this cake but I have to say, I am tired! I really mean it this time, it's time for some simpler projects!