Saturday, December 27, 2008

Because You Asked....

I wrote this several months back and shared it with some of my friends and family. I thought I would post it today as I just read one of my favorite blogs and thought I would share both my Cake Wreck and the blogsite with you. Enjoy and Let them Eat Cake!

Valley of the Cake Dolls

It was my granddaughter’s second birthday and I traveled 1700 miles to see her. I spent the week with her before her birthday and was reminded just how sweet and volatile a 2 year old can be. She could go from sweet and cuddly to total meltdown in the matter of seconds with just one little word “No”. That one word would be uttered and her happy giggling world would suddenly turn into something that can only be related to an all out “China Syndrome” nuclear meltdown. She would do this several times a day and with her being 2 she never really cared where or when. This I can say, she has healthily lungs and is strong as an ox.
Sometimes you just have to have a melt-down for no other reason than, it's just time.

When my sister and I were little as well as my own daughter and nieces, we were blessed with the cakes my mother made. They were these gorgeous creations made from a doll and lots of cake and creamy frosting. They as everything that my mother did were pure perfection. My mother would bake the cake of our choosing in a bundt or angel food pan. Then she would take an inexpensive Barbie want-a –be doll and take her legs off so all that was left was the upper torso. Then she would fill the hole in the middle with stiff frosting and stick the doll in the frosting so it would stand upright. Once she had the entire cake frosted like a beautiful ball gown she would take a piping envelope and make the top of the dress on the doll with piping and sprinkles and candies and such. It was any little girl’s dream come true. Mother is now making doll cakes for the little angels in heaven, but her tradition must live on. My daughter’s only request of me for my precious little granddaughter was a “doll cake just like Meme used to make”. Don’t get me wrong, I can cook, I can bake and I can plate food and make it look delectable, but cake decorating is not my forte’. So off the two of us go to get the necessary supplies, which is where my story truly begins.

This is what Meme's cakes would look like. This is from the "How To" website.

No longer do they make the Barbie knock-off dolls that you can tear their legs off. No today they make dolls whose legs do not come off. The day of the birthday, it is just Miss Priss and I at home and we get out the supplies ready to embark on our maiden voyage as grandmother and granddaughter making the first of a long line of doll cakes. So I get out the bundt pan, fill it with creamy strawberry cake batter and place it in the over and start to work figuring out how to fit a 16” tall Barbie into a 10’ tall cake and make her stand up. Once the bundt is cooked I stick the doll in the center to measure and realize there is no way short of cutting of the doll’s legs. I had one problem, no way to cut them off. I have no tools not even a sharp pair of scissors. Trying to emulate Meme and make do with what I had on hand I decided if I baked another cake, in a round cake pan that might give me the height needed. So into the oven the next layer went. I placed the bundt cake on top of the regular round cake then stuck the doll into that in hopes I had solved my dilemma. The doll was still a good bit too tall. So in a stroke of genius I bent the dolls legs back into an unnatural position of kneeling and secured them with a large rubber band. I wrapped her in plastic wrap and stuck her in the middle of the cake and ‘ouila, it was perfect. I then proceeded to cover the whole thing in rich and creamy pink frosting. The dolls torso was still devoid of any covering. I had looked for a piping bag but could not find one so purchased canned piping instead. I covered the bodice with this piping only to realize it was very hard to control and way too oily to put on the plastic wrap. So it would slide down the bodice onto the cake. After several attempts I was able to get it to stick and the effect if not perfection was acceptable to a two year old. The party was to be later that evening after dinner. I placed the cake in the refrigerator to keep the icing from melting anymore than it was and proceeded on with dinner.

Here she is in all her pink glory. Her legs pinned up to hold her in.

We gathered presents and cake and took the party outside. To say it was a pink party is not being fair to you. Think Pep tobismal explosion and then cover that in pink wrapping. Yes, it was pink.

It was a plethera of pink party puffiness.
Just as we are preparing to light the candles and sing Happy Birthday, I heard a loud pop. My mind acknowledged what the sound was just as I realized what the consequence would be. The rubber band popped the doll’s legs were released and she let loose with a reverse round house kick to the back of the cake that only Bruce Lee or Chuck Norris could compete with. The back of the cake, which is the dress popped out sending cake and cake juice off the plate. To which Little Miss Priss, raised her eyebrows put her little hands on her little chubby cheeks and said “OH NUTS!”

Nanny! The cake exploded!

That’s it, that’s my cake story.


Mrs4444 said...

Another story for generations to tell! Awesome. I did the same thing, minus the rubber band, as I did have gardening snips. You guessed it; off came Barbie's poor legs! She was a beaut, though! A cake my Kendall will never forget. Thanks for the walk back in time. BTW, I have given you an award in my Monday post! :) And if this post was the only one you'd ever written, you'd deserve it :)

Train Wreck said...

OMG! That was the funniest "Cake Wreck" ever! Too bad it wasn't on video! hahaha "Oh nuts" that is too cute! What a beautiful little girl. Hope you had a great Christmas, have a wonderful New year!

terri said...

Hahaha! That sounds like something I would do. Actually... sounds like something I DID! I hosted a bridal shower with the grand idea of making a bride doll cake. I'm not sure why, but I waited until the day before to make the cake. No practice cake. Just the real deal the night before. By some miracle, it turned out pretty well. As I recall, I baked the cake in one of those 8 cup pyrex measuring pitchers. Perfect size for a doll skirt. Mine wasn't as colorful as yours though. Love the pepto bismal pink theme!

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

What a great story. It sounds like a Home Alone moment.

I have made that cake before and must tell you that Pampered Chef makes a measuring glass/baking dish that is perfect for becoming a Barbie skirt.

Girly Stuff said...

Very cute! I never had the barbie cake. I had a spider cake with pipe cleaner legs. Have you made one of those?

Your granddaughter is a cutey!

But you already knew that I'm sure.

Queenie said...

OMG You should market those! I mean, anyone can have a Barbie-like doll dress cake but come one - an exploding cake!??!? I am planning on making one for my granddaughter - can't wait to see it end up on ... oops, I won't tell!

Anonymous said...

A Barbie Psycho Cake!
WOW! Just what every little two yr. old girl dreams about. NOT!!
Poor little girl is gonna need therapy for her Post Cake Explosion Traiuma. What if she never eats cake again and is left with only "Pie" as her dessert of choice. *sniff
Look at what you've done to this poor, poor, child!!


Miranda said...

I'm here from Cake Wrecks!

You can go to the craft stores and buy cheap "doll picks" which already have no legs, just a spike to anchor them in the cake. No more doll destruction, cake explosion, or unneeded expenditures. :)

I must say, Grandma's cakes there look utterly fabulous. I use the Wilton dress/doll pan for mine and I guess I need to put a little extra cake batter in them. It never rises quite to the top and it makes the skirt too short. :(

If you're feeling really adventurous, try draping the cakes with fondant to make the dresses. It's not actually hard and it looks really cloth-like! I do doll cakes fairly regularly because all the girls here...up into their forties...want them. And they always seem to want red velvet so it can seem extra macabre when they cut in. lol