Thursday, May 21, 2015

Scotch Bottle in Crate Birthday Cake

A friend of mine recently turned the big 4-0. I had to do something special! He's a scotch lover so I had originally thought I was going to bake him a cake/cupcakes made with scotch. But when I was looking for recipes on Pinterest, of course, I ran across the wine bottle in a crate cake. I thought, "this could also work for a scotch bottle." In the end, the cake didn't turn out exactly as I had hoped/wanted, but I was still pretty satisfied. I always forget to take pictures during the creation process, but, for the most part, I just followed the instructions on the video linked above, with a few modifications. I've outlined the process below.

Scotch bottle: I used 3/4 gum paste, 1/4 fondant (I'm frugal and knew that the bottle would still dry hard even if it wasn't completely gum paste, so I used some fondant as a filler). This particular brand of scotch is in a clear bottle with the liquid being a gold/yellow color....which is pretty much the hardest color to least for me. Originally I attempted to do a marble look by kneading together different colored balls of gum paste (in shades of yellow and gold), but it didn't really work out very well. Oh well, I used it anyway. I covered a similar shaped scotch bottle (Macallan is bloody one I knew had one of those bottles!) in saran wrap and a layer of cornstarch, then laid the rolled out gum paste onto the bottle (laying on it's side - I put a tea towel under the bottle so it wouldn't roll around as much). Once it was molded nicely, I cut the gum paste about midway up the bottle. Then I let it sit on the bottle for a few days. This is very similar to what was done in the video. The only difference is that I used a scotch bottle instead of a wine bottle.

After it hardened for a few days, I sponge painted on the orange coloring. This was done with small amounts of Wilton orange icing color mixed with vodka. I am definitely not an artists, but I like the way the coloring turned out. It was definitely better than the color it originally was. Finally, for the gold seal, I mixed lots of gold pearl dust with vodka and painted on a few coats in order for it to show really well.

As for the label, I cheated. I don't have a printer to use for edible printing, so I just printed it on a piece of paper and glued it on with water. I know some grocery stores can do edible prints for you, but it usually has to be non-copyrighted material....which this wasn't. In the end, no one was going to eat the scotch bottle, so I didn't think it'd matter too much (and it didn't).

Crate: Surrounding the cake itself is the 'wooden' crate. Now, this didn't come close to what I had attempted to do, but still thinks it looks pretty, so I was fine with it. I didn't have a wood imprint, like she does in the video and found a tutorial on how to make wood planks out of gum paste/fondant. So I followed the tutorial, but I think where I went wrong is that I rolled out the 'snake' vertically (thus spreading out the wood grain), rather than horizontally (which I think would have caused the wood grain to come out better). I had to roll out the gum paste pretty thin (because I didn't start with enough colored blocks...eek), so drying them for 3 days was very important.

Assembly: I iced the sides of the cake a bit more than a crumb coat, but you don't need to gob it on. It's also ok if there are crumbs cause it's going to be covered. I liked that...I'm bad at not crumbing the icing. I did use quite a bit of icing for the top, though, since I thought it would be seen. In the end, it was entirely covered with coconut so it wasn't necessary, but in terms of eating the cake, it's nice to have a bit more than just the filling. Finally, I put the bottle mold on top and surrounded it with toasted coconut. Voila!

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