Friday, March 9, 2012

Because Sometimes a Birthday is More Than Just Another Year...

Sometimes a birthday is a celebration of a life that hangs in the balance. A joy that this date has come and hope that the next one will too.  Sometimes a birthday is proof of the blood, sweat, and tears of countess survivors, husbands, wives, sons daughters, fathers, mothers, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, friends, doctors, nurses, hospice workers, researchers, activists, volunteers, and so many, many more. The American Cancer Society calls itself "The Official Sponsor of Birthdays" and I love their commercials and guest artists. Something as simple as hearing the birthday song sang sometimes means much more.

I got to make a cake for someone celebrating a milestone birthday. Family, friends, and coworkers came together to celebrate a whopping 50 years! (Dang that's old!) She also started her third round of chemo this week.

The numbers actually gave me fits. I made some out of fondant, but only dried it overnight so the dang things fell apart this morning. It's one reason I'm really not happy with Satin Ice, but when I need black that's the best option. I ended up making the numbers out of chocolate. Piped them on parchment papers similar to a technique I've used before. I got smart and stuck straws in each of them to support them (you can see the one in the 5 peeking on the left side between the curly part and the straight part). Once they set up (took like 10 minutes in the fridge versus like two weeks the dang fondant takes), I covered them in my favorite Moonstone luster dust. It's a good thing you can't see the back of these. I guess you have to make two sides and glue them together to make it look good.

 I thought the black and white would make a nice theme (and keep me from having to color a bunch of fondant), but it desperately needed some color for "pop." Again, I busted out the Moonstone luster dust and hit the little pearls along the bottom for some funkiness. I suppose that's not the best word choice for food products, is it?

And flowers, oh flowers... They add color and softness to a cake. And I've seen pictures of beautiful cakes with just a simple red flower and no other decorations. I searched around and this seems to be a cross between an anemone and a fantasy flower. Super easy to make and just the perfect shade of red to add to the cake. I can promise you'll see more in the future.

And of course, my favorite, the aftermath:

My favorite chocolate cake recipe, cookies and cream filling, and covered in chocolate ganache. I snuck a bite of the filling before I used it in the cake, quality control you know, but managed to avoid temptation at the party.

Happy Birthday Donna! And here's to many, many, many more.

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