Sunday, May 11, 2008

The Great Cake Caper

... Heehee, caper. I like that word. Caper. It makes everything sound like so much fun, even if it was just making a cake. Although, to be fair, it was a pretty intense cake project.

My friend Natalie (not my roommate, another one... I know like five. They do get confusing) was turning 25 and having an 80s themed party. It was a lot of fun - we all dressed up, we played Singstar and Guitar Hero 80s, and we watched Interview with the Vampire (which, okay, is not an 80s movie, but we enjoyed it all the same, dammit.) Some choice pictures:

The birthday girl with her tiara, courtesy of me and Nathalie!

I think my favorite part of this one is how fierce Nathalie looks with that guitar controller.

Chris didn't dress up so much - that polo is from the 80s, but it still needed something else. Enter Elise and the rad Flock of Seagulls hairdo.

Pac-Man nacho dip by Elise.

Charles getting into the spirit of his 'chezzy rocker' outfit.

Nathalie went the Madonna route with her costume.

I am told this is very 80s... I think it's nifty, anyway.

I decided I would provide the birthday cake, and that it would be a red velvet 'bloody' cake. Now somewhere along the way I learned that Natalie didn't like chocolate, so... well, red velvet was out, since it's a chocolate-flavored cake. It kinda screwed with my ideas on what to do decoration wise. But then inspiration hit - probably from watching wayyyy too much Buffy - what about a coffin cake? Vanilla, with gray-tinged icing, and slightly ajar, with raspberry coulis leaking out of it. Not 80s, no. But still wicked cool. So Nat and I pumped ourselves up with lots and lots of 80s music and set to work.

My roommate helped me hardcore with this project - it was my design and all, but most of the actual decoration work was hers. All I really did was make the mix, pour it in a square pan, and turn the oven on. Then I made the gray icing, but she did supervise that - as she frequently reminds me, she's taken entire courses on how to mix colors, so she knows much more than I do about that. Then Nat cut the cake in a coffin shape, and we baked a separate, thinner layer for the lid and cut that to shape. We cut out a hollow in the cake, about half an inch deep, and smushed a bunch of raspberries with a tiny bit of sugar, and filled the hollow with them. We iced the sides and the rim of the hollow, then put the lid on top - slightly open, and iced that. Then we used more of the raspberry mush to have it overflowing out the side that was open, and over the side of the plate as if something had crawled out of the coffin trailing blood. Nat used green icing and some sugar roses to decorate the top and sides of the coffin, and I put a gummy spider on one side of it and one in the trail of blood. The end result was exactly what I wanted, and a big hit at the party - it tasted pretty darn good, too. (Progress pictures are coming - as soon as Nat unloads her camera!)

We made cupcakes to match, since the cake ended up pretty small:

Note the gummy spiders and smushed raspberry 'blood'.

It was Charles's birthday the day after, so we made him special boobie cupcakes (linked in case you don't want to see cartoony boobies). He liked them.

All and all, a good time was had by all. (Except maybe for poor Nick, who is severely allergic to Jake, Natalie's cat. Poor thing.)

On the knitting front, I haven't really gotten anything done. I had kind of a long week, with work (my company moved buildings this week, it's a mess), and scriptwriting, and the cake-planning and shopping, plus yesterday I had a bellydancing workshop and dinner-and-show event for my teacher's 10-year anniversary of dancing. It was a lot of fun, but... this weekend tired me right out.

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