I baked two boxes of cupcakes, and I got 23 out of each box. I used an ice cream scoop I bought specifically for this project to try to keep the cupcakes the same size. It didn't really work because I was impatient and sloppy. But in the end it was OK. I let them cool while Liv and I went to her Spanish class, ate lunch and she laid down for her nap.
I'd made the buttercream frosting Wednesday -- I made it and the chocolate frosting for Jane's birthday birthday cake on the same day. One batch of chocolate and three batches of vanilla -- dyed two batches pink and split the third between teal and purple. I was making the frosting just before we left to go to supper at church on Wednesday, and I couldn't find my specifically purchased food dye. (It was with the party favors instead of in the pantry!) So I put the buttercream in the fridge, went to our meal and came back to try to dye it. I let it warm up but not enough -- dying it was SUPER hard. Today I left the frosting out all morning -- so probably 4 or 5 hours -- so the icing was smooth and spreadable, and I could have easily added the dye today. Oh well. (Remember how anti-food dye I once was? I still am, but I've kind of given in somehow and not sure how to return to my puritan ways.)
I had a ton of frosting, and I scooped it on before using my offset spatula to spread it around. I worked from top to bottom - purple, teal and pink. I added white sparkle sanding sugar and then tried to pipe on scales and details like the picture. I had bought a Dollar Tree piping bag to try, and it was the PITS. My frosting was too thick and it broke the "reusable" bag. I salvaged what frosting I could into a regular piping bag (because of course I got those too) and almost ran out. In retrospect I should have laid out my lines with a knife -- just sculpting it in the frosting before I piped on the lines. I've seen videos where they do that for details, and it's such a smart idea. Luckily Jane doesn't mind unrealistic scales! I also need to buy more couplers to use with the regular piping bags -- I only had one, even though I have many types of tips.
|The finished product!|
I used a cake box made for a sheet cake, and it worked fine. I didn't get the cake exactly centered, but it's not bad. The box was able to fold up around it, and there's a lid. I put the whole thing in the fridge -- will take it out before the party to come to room temperature, but this way it will stay fresher I guess?
Not sure how eating the cake will go, and I definitely could have made things neater and prettier (those scales will haunt me). But it was fun to research and execute, and Jane is happy! Hope it's a hit at the party!