Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Jackson's Christening

Retirement Cake

This cake is boxed and ready for delivery to Rod, who recently retired from a long and successful career as an engineer. His daughter Christa and wife surprised him with this cake, and they suspect that a lot of his free time will be spent fixing up his vintage orange VW Beetle (what a great car - I want one!) The cake is Rod's favorite, Boston Cream Pie -- yellow cake, a creamy vanilla custard filling, and chocolate ganache frosting. The car is made from modeling chocolate and has some depth to it to give it a hint of 3-D. Congrats Rod! Enjoy your freedom.

Golf cake

Here's a golf-themed birthday cake for Nick and John, complete with golf bag, clubs and a few golf balls scattered about on the green and grassy fairway (which may need mowing). Who's counting the number of balls, the number of the hole, or even the ages of the recipients? Not this baker, that's for sure! Lemon cake with raspberry meringue buttercream filling drizzled with raspberry preserves, and lemon buttercream icing the cake. Yum. I hope it was Happy Birthday Gentlemen!

I want to look like Brenda when I turn 50

Happy Birthday Brenda!
Coconut cake with passion fruit curd and coconut buttercream.

Gia's First BIrthday

A Minnie Mouse themed cake for baby Gia's first birthday!!
Gia even got a tiny smash cake to eat all by herself.  
What a beautiful dessert table made by Gia's mom!
Happy Birthday Gia!!! 

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Beachy wedding shower

A gluten-free chocolate stout cake (using gluten-free stout!) with chocolate ganache frosting and filling for Michelle and Scott who are getting married on a beach in the Caribbean.   The design is based on a photo from their wedding blog.  A bottle of wine awaits them by their beach chairs.  
Congrats you two!!  May you have many happy years together! 

Pamela's Birthday at the Beach

I love this cake with its edible shells and starfish, and pearls.  The colors remind me of beach glass.  I hope it brought you lots of happiness at your beachside birthday celebration, Pamela!
Coconut cake with passion fruit curd and coconut buttercream.  So summery! 

Friday, August 2, 2013

Custom Car Groom's Cake

I was contacted by Kristen, who was getting married in August.  She was looking for someone to make a replica of a very special car: her fiance Mike's Camry, which was his pride and joy.  He had spent hours and lots of money fixing it up and customizing it, as you can see from the actual photo of the car in the top left corner of the collage.  The sad part of the story is that Mike's car had been "retired" early, due to an accident; fortunately Mike was fine, but the car didn't make it.

Kristen sent me a lot of photos of Mike's car, and decided on a delicious vanilla buttermilk cake with vanilla meringue buttercream filling, covered with chocolate ganache.  I took it from there.  Car cakes are a bit tricky to make.  This cake started as a filled rectangular layer cake roughly the size of a very big men's shoe box.  I then took out my sharp knife and began carving to get the cake into the proper size and shape of the car.  The shaped cake was covered with ganache, and some details added into the ganache or with modeling chocolate (yum!).  The whole thing was then covered with fondant, and the windows and wheel wells cut out.  I added details into the fondant, like the lines from the doors, hood and trunk, and well as other subtle shaping; it was a time consuming process.  The car was painted with an airbrush which gave it a nice sheen; the side paint pattern was painted by hand, however.  Finally, the body of the car was raised off the base cake board to make room for the tires, which were also made by hand from modeling chocolate.  At points, I felt like I was working in a bodyshop!

Although Kristen didn't ask for it, I took some artistic license and added some cans from the back of the car and "Just Married!" to the back window of the car.  I figured they wouldn't mind the surprise!

When I walked into the wedding venue to deliver the cake, Kristen's dad was sitting in the ballroom while Kristen was getting ready.  As soon as he saw the cake, he exclaimed, "That's Mike's car!!" But Mike was the real judge, and he didn't know about the cake, and wouldn't see it until after the wedding ceremony.

When I heard back from Kristen after the wedding, she was thrilled.  (That's the best part of my job.  I love my customers!)  She said that Mike nearly started to cry when he saw the cake, and that he wouldn't let anyone cut it at the wedding!!  The guys who had done much of the work on the car couldn't believe their eyes either.  Kristen and Mike finally did cut into the cake at home a day or two after the wedding, but only because they wanted to taste it (they thought it was delicious).  Then into the freezer it went (well wrapped of course) -- Mike wanted to keep his cake for a while longer!!!  That's a great complement to the look of the cake, and it is the second cake I've made in less than two weeks that meant so much to the recipient that it was saved, at least for a little while.  The irony is that I go out of my way to make cakes that taste great too, using high quality ingredients and making everything from scratch. Although my cakes will freeze well if tightly wrapped, I do hope that they unwrap, defrost and enjoy eating the cake before long -- it is delicious cake, after all!!

Best wishes to Kristen and Mike for a long and very happy life together.  I'm honored to have been able to contribute to your special day.  Congratulations!!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Dawn's 40th "Touchdown"!

I've now made 2 Giants helmet cakes, and I wouldn't have expected this, but both of them were for women. The first was a cake for Bat Mitzvah girl Lexa, and the second, shown here, is for Dawn's 40th Birthday. In fact, Dawn had seen Lexa's cake online and loved it, which is how Dawn's good friend Lisa ended up contacting me. The cake was a surprise for Dawn, and I had to deliver it to the Jersey Shore where Dawn and a group of her BFFs were spending the weekend! When presented with the cake at a celebration dinner, Dawn was so thrilled she shed tears of joy, and she wouldn't let anyone near the cake with a knife!! (It is vanilla bean buttermilk cake with chocolate mousse filling and dark chocolate ganache outside, so it should taste pretty good whenever she finally eats it. I delivered the cake a week ago, and heard that as of Tuesday, it was still uncut!) Happy Birthday Dawn! You are blessed to be surrounded by such wonderful friends. And eat your cake!!

Saturday, July 13, 2013

Wyatt's Dinosaur

Here's the full photo of the cake for Wyatt, who is turning 3. He's crazy about dinosaurs, and so for his birthday, he got a very friendly dinosaur who's about to take a big bite of the birthday cake! This silly dino is is ready to party, dressed in his converse sneakers and a birthday hat! The dino is mostly edible (there's some support in there so he can stand up) and his skin is modeling chocolate, so he's very sweet too. The tiered cake is vanilla bean buttermilk cake with a chocolate fudge filling and blue vanilla buttercream outside. Happy Birthday Wyatt!!

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Tyler's confirmation cake

Tyler's parents wanted to surprise him with a non-traditional confirmation cake.  They wanted to include both baseball and softball as well, since they're Tyler's favorite sports.

I made a figurine of the very athletic Tyler, and he's got a baseball bat in one hand, a lacrosse stick in the other.  His parents loved the figurine so much, they saved it in the freezer!

The cake is chocolate with oreo filling and vanilla frosting.  Peanut-free since Tyler can't have peanuts.

Congrats on your confirmation Tyler!

Saturday, May 25, 2013

Graduation for Steven and Ryan

A graduation cake for lifelong friends Steven and Ryan who are excellent lacrosse players. Instead of a traditional graduation cake (a flat cake with a graduation cap on it), I made them a graduation "scrapbook," complete with photos of the boys from childhood through high school, gum paste lacrosse sticks (those were tricky to make, especially in the rainy weather we've been having!), sugar skis and a mountain too. I love this kind of highly personalized cake; it tells a story.
Congrats to Steven and Ryan!! Best of luck to you both in college. And to their parents, who won't get to see them so much any more, if you're sad and missing your boys, there's always cake therapy!

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Yankee Stadium Cake

Yankee Stadium for Jonny's Yankee themed bar mitzvah!
Chocolate cake, oreo and chocoalte ganache filling, chocolate ganache frosting, and lots of decorating.  Notice the LED scrolling message board!  
This cake was a home run!
Mazel Tov Jonny!

Monday, March 11, 2013

Claire's Birthday

 This cake is for a very special girl - my baby girl.  She just turned 15.  I'm not sure how that happened so quickly since I haven't gotten any older... well I don't feel any older.  Claire asked for her favorite cake, chocolate cake with Oreo filling, for her birthday.  She requested a cake with ombre - that's the shading from light to dark in the same color.  I made this ruffled ombre cake for her, and put a pretty pink rose on top.   She's a special person and a terrific daughter, and she deserved a cake as beautiful, sweet and classy as she is.

Happy Birthday to Claire, who regardless of her age, will always be my baby.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Strawberries for Saleeya

Saleeya's 5th birthday was coming up.  Despite her young age, Saleeya has a definite sense of style, and knew what she wanted for her birthday.  Her mom contacted me to make a cake that was loosely based on the children's toy Strawberry Shortcake.  She sent me some images to use as inspiration.

This very cute cake consisted of an 8" tier and a 6" tier.  The cake was vanilla yellow cake with strawberry buttercream filling and vanilla buttercream frosting on the outside of the cake.   I also made a dozen cupcakes (vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream) to go with it.   The strawberries and flowers on the cake are all made by hand from fondant.

On the right above is a sketch I had done and sent to Saleeya's mom so she could see what I was I proposed to make for Saleeya.  I was trying a out new drawing app  (I usually sketch out cakes in pencil).  I think it came out okay in the app, but I think I'm sticking to pencil next time.

Below is the finished cake, and the adorable birthday girl herself, all decked out in Strawberry fashion.  I love that skirt!!  Her matching pink, red and green dessert table is behind her with her cake is right in the center.  I think those pink, red and green candies look so pretty.  It looks like it was a great party!!

Happy 5th Birthday Saleeya!!!