Wednesday, 22 August 2012

52 Creative projects, Week 6: An amateurs guide to creating a Hoot cake.

Now in my title I say amateur, but I normally describe myself as a disaster chef. I enjoy cooking, thats a lie. I love to eat, so I persevere through all the cooking. But since Oliver has began the journey of foods, I have began the journey of cooking. It is something we do together, the process of creating the food and watching him eat the food- luckily my kid eats everything (except potato). I knew I wanted to bake Oliver's first birthday cake, against everyones recomendation. But I figured if I baked it with love then how much do the aesthetics really matter? The taste I can do, but I have never been one to create a good looking meal. Well, I think my Hoot is fantastic. It is made with so much love thus is true. But also with patience and care and I feel that shows. But I also didn't over do myself, I kept it within my reach. Here is my step by step guide to making a Hoot birthday cake for amateurs.

The recipe was taken from this exact website. For one of the cakes I accidentally used 3/4 of a cup of sour cream and I feel it has a much nicer texture. Otherwise I followed it to a T.
I like this recipe because its not as rich as a traditional mud cake nor as moist but still as delicious. Unfortunately it is quite moreish so not recommended for those on a diet. The icing is AMAZING. Very rich, very very yummy.

Here's a photo of me cooking. 


I baked two cakes. The larger for the head, the smaller for the body. The smaller is 18cm and the bigger is 20cm. I poured the mixture at the same levels for both cakes so that they would rise to the same level.

Once cooled, I cut them about 4cm in to create the Hoot shape. Note Hoot in the background watching over me. These off cuts will later form the wings and the beak and feat.

I just got creative here and made the feat and beak. The wings are just the off-cut of the cake cut in half. I knew I would overcomplicate things for myself if I tried to give my cake the same shape wings as the original hoot so I decided to leave it to the icing to create the similarities. 

I took all the wings and beaks off to ice the blue. It took me a while to create this colour but I just kept adding little bits at a time.

Then I did the eyes and the heart. I used no food colouring here. To get the shape of the eyes I used fried egg rings and just tried to used the hoot toy to do the eyebrows. I have been drawing love hearts since I could hold a pen so the heart wasn't as issue.  

To get the orange icing I used a lid full of yellow icing and just a dash of red. In failed attempts the icing would shine bright red so I was very careful with my 'dash'.

For the eyes and the stitching on the wings and the heart I used a mixture of chocolate bullets and chocolate covered peanuts. 

And here he is. A Hoot cake to be proud of, well I am. 

And just to prove the amatuer chef I am I have added my previous attempt at a hoot cake, its good for a laugh. 

I hope Mr Oliver J enjoys eating this cake on his first birthday as much as I enjoyed baking it.

Happy hooting everybody.

-Cassandra J

*edit. He did! And so did I.

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