How to make a christening cake for a beautiful little boy.
Lucas is my best friend’s grand-son, so it was an absolute joy and honour for me to be asked to make the christening cake.
People have such faith in me, that they would entrust me with such an important job and I really don’t want to let them down in any way, but can I admit to not feeling quite as positive about the whole thing as they are? Maybe even feeling a little nervous that I’d only ever made one other tiered cake before?
(You can see it here)
But this little boy is SO worth it. How could I let him down?
Here’s the finished christening cake, along with the requested train cake topper and baby blocks…
It’s not perfect. but made with much love.
1. I started off about five days before the christening by making the train cake topper, I bought some gumpaste powder from Hobbycraft to make it, gum paste is for modelling and it sets harder than fondant does.
I googled ‘train cake topper’ and ended up at this great blog, which co-incidentally I already had on my google reader list! The instructions and photographs made the job of making the train nice and simple. After it was finished, I just covered it with a clean tea-towel and put it to one side to dry off.
2. The second job which needed completing were the baby blocks. Now I really had to get my thinking cap on for these, should I make them from cake then cover them with buttercream before the fondant? Hmmm, well, being as there were still quite a few days before the christening I was a bit worried about the keeping qualities if the blocks were made in that way.
I did a bit more googling and read somewhere, I forget where, about someone making baby blocks from rice crispie squares! It occurred to me that if I bought the ready-made crispie squares, halved them, them put one on top of the other, they should be a ‘cube’ shape, just right for the baby blocks!
Rather than buttercream, I covered them with marzipan, then fondant.
First of all I tried moulding the fondant round the cube, but the sides were not definite enough, not sharp enough, so I used the rice-crispie square as a template and cut out each side individually.
five squares, six sides each = 30 squares of fondant. Phew.
The ‘LUCAS’ letters were cut-out from the remaining gum-paste which was used to make the train, left to dry for a few hours and stuck onto the blocks with edible glue.
I made up a little royal icing for the piping on the squares, coloured blue. It dried nice and hard very quickly.
Cover and put to one side.
3. For the actual cake, I used two square cake pans, one 9 inch, the other 7 inch and a couple of days before the christening made a simple madeira cake. I used a madeira cake recipe because I wanted the cake to be dense and moist and flavourful.
The cakes were split and filled with strawberry jam and buttercream.
4. I used the remaining buttercream to cover both cakes with a thin layer (what is commonly known as a crumbcoat) The smaller cake was sat on a thin cake board the same size as the cake (I had to cut it with a stanley knife so that it didn’t show.
The larger cake was sat on a cake board.
I covered the larger cake with white fondant, edged in a pretty ribbon (secured with dressmaking pins, the ones with large pearl heads) Just make sure you remove the pins before the cake is cut!!
5. To support the top tier, cut 4 lengths of dowelling rods just a smidge taller than the bottom cake, they should just show. Place them in a square shape (smaller than the top cake) in the bottom cake. Place the top tier in place, after it has been covered with fondant (I coloured the top tier blue with gel colouring)
Edge again with a pretty ribbon and secure with pins.
Use the ribbon to edge the cake board too, we did this with double-sided sticky tape.
6. Place the cake topper and blocks in place.
There you go, now don’t you feel a great sense of accomplishment and pride even?
It was so worth it.