Holy Birthday, Batman!

So, do I suck as a girlfriend with the fact that I’ve baked tons of things for friends, family, coworkers, and even for the staff at the Second Cup that I frequent every morning, but I’ve never baked anything for my boyfriend?  Am I docked -288932 girlfriend points as a result?

Yes.  And yes.

It dawned on me not even a month ago that I’d never made or baked anything for Justin, and quite frankly, I had a bit of a fallout with myself.  “That ain’t right,” I thought, so I decided to do something about it.  Bf was turning the big 3-0 this year, so I decided this occasion was as good as any to break my nasty streak of negligence.

It was tough to decide on what to do and I bounced about several ideas, the closest one being a dozen sugar cookies with the logos of various sports teams that he likes.  But I decided no.

I probably shouldn’t have posted that here, cuz he’ll likely read this, but whatever.

I wanted to do a cake covered with fondant, a medium that I had learned earlier this year.  And because him and I already had our combined birthday celebration with our friends, I wanted to keep the cake small since it was going to likely be eaten by just ourselves and our families.  I opted for the 6″ round cake pan which was the perfect size.

Halving the cake recipe was perfect for a 6″ round pan, with some batter to spare to make a couple cupcakes.

I decided to make a peanut butter cake which would have a layer of chocolate buttercream in the middle, as well as chocolate buttercream all around the outside of the cake.  Consider it my cake version of the Reese’s peanut butter cup (aka. little saucers of awesomeness).

The peanut butter cake – sliced in half.

I never understood how people could ice cakes so smoothly until I bought the right icing tip for the job.  I bought this giant tip at Michaels a while back and it makes icing a cake so much easier than my slapping it on with a spatula.

I use this giant tip and pipe buttercream generously all over the middle and around the entire cake until it’s covered, then use my spatula to level it out.  I found it really helps in reducing cake crumbs getting mixed into the icing.

The thick layer of buttercream between the two halves.
The cake iced all around and leveled out.

After icing the cake I set it aside to let the buttercream set a bit and started working on my batch of marshmallow fondant.  I had learned from my first time making marshamllow fondant to make a pile of powdered sugar on my table surface and pour my melted marshmallow mixture into the powdered sugar pile, rather than me mixing it all into a bowl (and creating a messy kitchen catastrophe).  May I just say that it was 238493 times easier this time around!

Ready to pour the melted marshmallows right into that pile. SOOO much easier.

I rolled out my fondant…

draped it over my cake…

and trimmed off the excess…

Pardon the yellow swirl in my fondant, I had originally intended on mixing yellow into it, then decided against it as I had another idea (as you’ll soon see.)

I decided to paint the fondant my desired colors rather than mix it into the fondant itself.  I figured this way it would take less food coloring and would be a lot easier on my hand muscles.  I decided to give this cake a black background.

I then cut out another piece of fondant and brushed it with yellow food coloring.

Then, I painstakingly cut out and painted black the symbol that would define the nature of this cake:

Holy fondant, Batman!

I was going to leave it at that but the edges looked kinda bare, and I had leftover marshmallow fondant to spare.

Whoa….I just rhymed.

Anyways, I decided to do a really simple sketchy skyline, aka Gotham city, all around the cake.  To speed up the process I took a pair of clean food scissors and snipped the silhouettes of the buildings all around.  I then adhered the border around the cake with a little bit of water and did the grey wash and black windows on it.  I found that if I painted the grey and the windows on before applying it to the cake, my warmth of my fingers would ruin and smear the windows and grey together, so doing it once on the cake was a much better idea.

And there it is.  Oh, and did I mention I made a card to match?  The Batman design was takem from the Vinyl Pop Figurines made by Funko, whom, by the way, makes super awesome figurines.

Needless to say, bf was super thrilled with the cake.  In all honesty though, I wasn’t totally satisfied with the end result.  There were bits I found that were jagged, and parts I thought that looked sloppy, but I guess that’s what happens when you’re learning to use something new and trying out different techniques, and there ain’t nothing wrong with that.  My redemption: it tasted great, so I’m not too devastated.

So the cake was consumed, we got black food coloring on our lips, and no one had an allergic reaction to the peanut butter in the cake.  Justin turned 30 without so much as a nervous breakdown, though he now complains about arthritis.  Good times.


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