A friend of mine contacted me last month on making a birthday cake for her soon to be 3-year-old daughter. I, of course, couldn’t resist.
After many conversations with her daughter, it was finally decided that fashioning a cake after the Fancy Nancy books was the way to go. We’re talking about fuchsia, lavender, polka dots, a crown and a tutu. Oh so Fancy Nancy. And just as fitting for a soon to be 3-year-old too.
I decorated each tier separately – sounds like common sense, really – but once upon a time, I didn’t do this step (shock and amazement) and yes the cakes looked like a disaster! C’est la vie.
The bottom cake was really the easiest to decorate with an assortment of polka dots in various shades of pinks and purples. Easy peasy….
Decorating the top tier wasn’t so bad – but this was my first time creating a tutu from fondant. Basically I cut out strips of fondant and pleated then around the cake. The finished result was just too cute. Next time, however I’d roll out the fondant thinner, since I found the thickness I did roll it out to seemed to dry out faster and created cracks along the surface.
The easy part was the butterflies … roll out colour choice of fondant and use a butterfly cookie cutter. (Really I enjoy the path of least resistance!) Then using a piece of ordinary paper that has been folded, I slid in the fondant butterflies and allowed each to dry (preferably over night). The paper held up the wings to allow the butterflies to look like they are about to fly.
I then strung them up on curled 12 gauge of jewellery wire (any colour you want – I just chose pink because of the theme), cut long enough to be embedded into the cake. And that is how you make sugar butterflies take flight….
The crown (a Fancy Nancy must have!) was really the easiest, but in the end the most nerve-wracking detail. Easy – because it was a cut out of piece of flattened fondant and formed against a tube (in my case I have a measuring cup that served this purpose well). When it is dry, gently pry loose and LEAVE IT ALONE!
When I was ready to top the cake, I made sure to secure it with pipped frosting along the front and back. Then I just prayed it didn’t come lose during transport. Ah, the details few people know that go through our minds when making a cake….
I finished the rest of the cake with little dots of piped icing around the base of the cake and along the empty spots of the top-tier.
And there you have it – a very fancy cake. Wouldn’t you agree?