Anyway, I opened it up, only to find that all my gel colors for tinting frosting were expired. Hmmm, so it'd been that long. But not a problem - this called for a quick trip to AC Moore. YIPPEE! Except that I needed to go during the day, so I had to take the girls along. So a little less yippee, but still, a big hooray, but with no exclamation mark.
The cake requested was a super chocolatey cake with a mocha filling and a chocolate fudge ganache on top. Oh, and the Hebrew letter "mem" on top of the cake, because the numerical value of "mem" is forty. I tried to sell the guy on a heart or a flower or pretty much anything other than putting his wife's age on top of her cake, but he was insistent. Always listen to the customer.
Here is the finished cake:
I used this mocha frosting recipe:
1/2 cup room temperature margarine
1/4 tsp salt
6 tbsp cocoa powder
2 tsp vanilla
6 cups powdered sugar
12 tbsp coffee
Cream the margarine, vanilla and cocoa. Add the salt, sugar and coffee and beat until light and fluffy. Either use right away or refrigerate it in a resealable container for a week.
The next step is to fill the cake. Place one of the cake layers, cut side up, on a cardboard round that is not much bigger than your cake. You can hold the cake in place with a dollop of frosting between the cake and the cardboard.
With an offset spatula, spread half of the frosting onto the cake layer, spreading it into an even layer. Top it with the second layer of cake, cut-side down.
16 ounces of Rich's Whip
18 ounces of bittersweet chocolate, chopped finely
Pour the Rich's Whip into a small pot. Bring the Rich's Whip to a simmer, not a boil. Pour the Rich's Whip over the chocolate and cover the bowl with a towel for five minutes, allowing the chocolate to melt. When the five minutes are up, mix it with a spoon until smooth. Allow the ganache to cool to room temperature, stirring it every so often to make sure it doesn't become too thick to pour.
Remove the cake from the freezer, place the cake on a cooling rack set over a jelly roll pan (to catch the drips) and slowly pour the ganache over the cake, using the back of a spoon or a small metal spatula to gently push the ganache over the side. If the whole cake does not get covered on the first go-round, wait until the ganache layer has set and pour a second layer. Don't worry if the bottom section of the cake isn't beautiful because you are now going to cover your tracks by pressing either sprinkles or shaved chocolate or cookie crumbs into the ganache as a pretty cover for the lower edge of the cake.
This is what it will look like:
1. Draw or print out whatever shape you are trying to recreate, in the size that you would like it to be.
2. Turn it over and with a marker, outline your shape on the back of the paper.
3. Still turned over, tape the paper to the counter.
4. Tape a piece of wax paper over the first paper.
6. With a medium-sized clean (and unused for paint) paintbrush - I use a foam brush - paint your design onto the wax paper, following the lines of your drawing. Remember, you will be seeing - and painting - the image backwards because once the chocolate had hardened and the wax paper is peeled off, the design will be flipped over and the flat side of the chocolate will be face up - and professional looking.
7. Finish painting the design and let dry on the counter until firm.
9. Using a small amount of frosting, just the tiny amount that is probably left in the bowl, adhere your design to the top of the cake.
Deliver your cake and come home to clean up the kitchen.
Sigh as you look around and remember why you don't do this craziness too often.