The Patchwork Cake



Two weeks ago T and I, celebrated our wedding anniversary. In the past, when we were about to celebrate our first year together, it suddenly dawned on me that we should definitely start a tradition for our little family. So I bought a heart shaped pan, baked a cake, tried to decorate it with chocolate icing. Even though I was baking breads and cakes that time, was not really venturing into cake decoration. All I owned back then was a Wilton dessert decorator, which comes with a limited number of icing nozzles. . I tried to cover up the imperfections on the cake I baked, managed to make a shell border (which now looks awful) and added a tiny little golden ribbon bow. Exactly after two years, after apparently spending time to perfect my piping skills, and molding techniques, and collecting countless tools of the trade, all I did this time, on this year’s heart cake, was covering up the defects. We had a guest for couple of days, were both overjoyed to have him with us, and practically forgot about baking a cake. By the time we saw him off, we were just only one night away from the DAY! So I started galloping around the kitchen, baked a cake according to the recipe card which popped up first, grew impatient and tried to take it out even before it cooled. Well, at the end, I was left with a severely disfigured heart and piles of cake crumbs. There was hardly enough time to bake again, so I sat with some apricot jam, and tried to paste the pieces together, even had to make a “crumb mortar” to fill in the gaping holes. I should have known that patience pays!!!!

Butter cream is only sparingly used for this cake, mainly as glue for sticking whatever you see on the top. The rounds stand up flowers, and the beads are all made of marshmallow fondant. My initial plan was to cover this cake with a sheet of fondant, but then as the surface was almost beyond repair, I finally shifted on to a more dimensional plan, using fondant cutouts, which to a certain extent concealed the flaws on the surface. Wiggly piped icing, flowers and beads are all used as visual diversions. When I actually started off on the cake, I was never even sure that this will ever turn out into something “photo worthy”. You now know why this post does not carry step by step photos. Altogether when I think about the series of events which culminated with this cake, I am somehow feeling very content. As time goes by, you do not always learn to excel, but you do learn to rectify your mistakes gracefully. I am getting a line and growing up…

Ciao!

Please follow the link to learn how to make marshmellow fondant

40 comments:

Tanuja said...

Hi Archana,

Belated annivasary:) ur cake looks romatic:)

Anonymous said...

Hi
Your cakes are beautiful. Did you take any classes fro decorating cakes? Can you suggest some if you have take any?

Sukanya M said...

Belated Anniversary to you, Archana & T.

I am AMAZED each time I visit your site. They look like works of art!

RP said...

Happy wedding anniversary Archana. The cake looks beautiful. What a wonderful tradition of baking a heart shaped cake every year! I wanted to ask a ton of questions like 'how did you make the beads', 'how did you make the flowers' etc. but I don't think I can ever do this. So never mind. :)

Ashwini said...

happy anniversary archana. hope you have many more sweet anniversaries like these. the cake is gorgeous as always :-)

Lakshmi said...

Hi Archan
Belated Anniversary
such nice cake

Shankari said...

Happy Anniversary. You should start selling your cakes, you do them with such a passion. Hats off

archana said...

Tanuja
Thank you so much

Anony.....s,
Thank you. Look for a craft and hobby supply store like Micheals near you. They usually runs classes for cake deck enthusiasts. These classes are pretty casual, they teach you the basic techniques. Once you get the basic know how on how to hold the pastry bag in the right angle etc. you can build things up on your own with the help of books,CDs and other supporting materials aavilable in the internet. Do let me know if you have any specific questions..

Sukanya,
Thank you for the greetings.
I am so happy that u liked the cake, Do come back again..

RP,
Thank you RP...
When you have a question, please feel free to ask it, Spicyana is always your friend !!!! ( If i don't have an answer, i sure will make it up. just kidding !!!)To start with here are few answers
1) All that u see on the cake are made of M Fondant, and you have the recipe in the post. I tinted the fondant pale yellow, and made tiny little beads with my hand ( pinch of a little,and shape it )
2) For flowers i used tiny little flower cutters, and cupped it by poking in the center. Added a cream dot in the center.
Hope that helps. You will be pretty amazed to see how good you are once you start doing it.


Ashwini,
Thank you so much, you are very kind..

Lakshmi,
Thank you very much

Shankari,
Thank you for your kind words. I havn't sold any yet, but i do make cakes for my friends and coworkers, for fun and just plainly for fun. Your comment ofcourse is an inspiration. Thank you

Vineela said...

HI Archana,
Really nice.
Belated anniversary wishes.
Nice flowers with good color and neat presentation.
I want to know with what you covered the cake .
The white layer is appearing with the flowers is made of what ?
Hope you clear my doubt.
Vineela

Manisha said...

Happy Anniversary!! What a super cake! How do you come up with these fabulous designs?!! Hope you had a great anniv!!

Puspha said...

Happy belated wedding anniversary.

What a cake!!!! U r a cake decor pro. Gosh!! Got to learn a lot from u.

Inji Pennu said...

Okay, I have a question too. Where do you live? :-)
And I tell you archana,I do think you should bake another cake instead of fixing up crumbled cakes. There is a crumbled cake dumpster in Florida,
I know, and can give you the address ;-)
** എന്നെ പക്ഷെ കേക്കു കള്ളി കള്ളി എന്നു വിളിക്കരുതു കേട്ടൊ.(ഇന്നസന്റു style) **

Inji Pennu said...

Oh sorry, dreaming about the cake, forgot to wish you a HAPPY ANNIVERSARY! May the good Lord bless you with 100 more anniversaries together.

KrishnaArjuna said...

Archana.
Belated anniversary wishes to you & your better half.
Cake looks absolutely amazing, I wouldn't even suspect a damaged cake underneath all the decorations if you haven't wrote about it. If this is your version of a damaged cake I cannot even imagine what an absolutely perfect cake would look like?? I have a question for you if you don't mind me asking, did you take cake decorating classes?

Anonymous said...

Sorry archana i forgot your wedding anniversary. Congrats to both of you...
could not find time to do many things too
I will write to you soon
Joyce

Krithika said...

The cake looks amazing. You are an extremely gifted person. Not everyone can decorate like this. Belated anniversary wishes.

archana said...

Vineela,
Thank you very much. The white rounds you see are made of marshmellow fondant ( link included in the post). I didn't want to use a lot of butter cream for this cake, so just gave a very thin coat of Buttercream and then went on and stuck the round cutouts all over.
Hope this helps

Manisha,
Thank you for the greetings. You are making me blush !!!

Pushpa,
Thank you very much, i am looking forward to sharing the stuff i know and learning from all of you

LG ...LG...LG..
We live in Portland ,OR and would love to send cakes to that Florida Dumpster. Let me know ur address.. Ha...Ha....
Mhhhh. Kalli....Kalii... Ennu Kuttiye njan vilikkilla kettoo. Thank you for the prayers and greetings LG, i apperciate it a lot.

K &A
Thank you so much for your kind words. I don't mind it at all, i have attended couple of WIlton cake decor classes in Micheals, and i would defanitely advise that attending a Wilton class is the best way to start with it. They don't teach you too much to begin with, but they do give you a good insight into the techniques, based on that , using your imagination you can really go places. There are so many books aviable out there which will further improve yout reportire of techniques. Depnding on where you live, you might even find Cooking schools offering basic and adavnced courses. Hope this helps.

Joyce chechi,
Thank you so much, i know how busy you will be with Renju around. Love and Kisses to Renju

Krithika
Thank you for coming in, i do appreciate your kind words


LOVE TO ALL

Archana

Aparna said...

Just Gorgeous Blog Archana!!!

I am left with no words for your creations!!

Vineela said...

Hi Archana,
Thank you very much.
Hope to learn more from you.
Iam not not sure that i can make a perfect touch up like you.
But I think why cant you contribute in some culinary cake shows in "food tv".Iam sure you are going to be "Winner" in that.
Hope to see your another delicacy soon...
Vineela

linda said...

Your cake looks absolutely gorgeous! Good thing you took it out of the tin too soon otherwise you wouldn't have had this beautifully decorated cake!
And happy anniversary!

Revathi said...

Belated anniversary wishes..The cake looks almost impeccable. Would never have thought it was not perfectt...

santhi said...

what fantabulous looking cake archana.....Simply beautiful..

Belated anniversary to U and Thomas.

KrishnaArjuna said...

Thankyou for the info about classes Archana. I have known that Michaels at Portsmouth offers cake decorating classes since quite some time but the timings did't work for me. I have read some books but for a novice like me they didn't do the trick. I should probably check the cooking schools..

Aparna said...

My previous comment was about your blog! just squeezed in some time to go through your latest post in detail! Fantastic cake decoration!

This just counts on your own talent and imagination regardless of any baking classes taken.

More than anything, your writing style, just pulls me back to peep through your site for new stuff everyday.

Menu Today said...

Hi Archana,
My belated wishes on your anniversary. Cake looks great.

Anonymous said...

That's one gorgeous-looking cake you have there. Happy belated anniversary.

Faffer

bilbo said...

hey ,
thanks for visiting my blog and leaving the comment. Especially so, because I got a chance to see the lovely cakes you've been churning out. They are gorgeous. I am not baking much these days as I live by myself and don't really need the calories.
You take care and keep dishing out those goodies.

archana said...

Aparna
Thank you very much,we will never know what we will see till we explore. I am really humbled to hear your comment, Aparna, you did inspire me today. Thanks again.

Vineela,
My goodness, FOOD TV !!!!!! Vineela you are almost making me cry. Thanks a lot, i repeat again and again ,you can do it!!! I thought the same way as you do, before i started doing it. Believe me !!!!

Linda,
Thank you for visiting Spicyana, do come back. I am feelling much better about the cake after hearing all these kind words. Thanks for the greetings

Revathi
Thank you for the good wishes, i am sooo happy that u like the cake.
Santhi
Thank you for the greetings. Even bigger thank you for the compilments.
K & A
Hope you finds a school which agrees with your schedule. I signed up in the Micheals store closer to my work place. Luckily they had sessions starting from 6.30pm, i used to go directly to the store after work. It was a bit tedious, but i guess i was too much excited about it back then. I agree with you, it is always better to attend one basic class before following the books. Good Luck

MT
Thank you so much, do come back to Spicyana

Faffer
Thanks for visiting and for the kind words

Bilbo
Thank you for coming in, i loved your blog. I wouldn't even think of decorating a cake, if i can't share it with my friends. I do try to count calories once in a while.


Archana

Babble said...

So, you're the cake (or bake) queen of the food blogs. All your recipes look good, but the mango mousse looks delicious.

Reshma said...

Belated anniversry wishes Archana, and many more years of aching joys, dizzying raptures and such stunning cakes:)

gattina said...

Hi archanat,
your accident first scared then later amased me! This cake is fantastic! You're a wonderful baker!

sailaja said...

Belated anniversary wishes,Archana.
That is a such a gorgeous looking cake and you put a professional baker to shame,believe me!
Simply awesome!!

shub said...

that cake looks incredibly beautiful! You sound like some kinda professional! :)could have never suspected a damaged cake below! kudos!
and hope your anniv was wonderful :)

Sumitha said...

Oh Archanat!I dont know how i missed your blog??? All of them have already said the things i had to say,but really not only this one, all the other posts and the photographs.........My God! they are out of the world! brilliant brilliant brilliant!Such a beautiful looking cake,Ayoh!how will u feel like eating it?

archana said...

Babble
Thank you for visiting my blog. A Queen???? Where is my crown ???? Thanks a bunch anyway

Reshma
Aren't you a poet!!!! Thank you for the good wishes.

Gattina,
Thanks a lot pal, wish i could send these cakes over for your spectacular photography.

Sailaja
Thank you for the greetings and the compliments.

Shub
It was wonderful, thank you for your comment, do come back.

Sumi
Oh you are here!!!you are here!!! Have a slice of this cake...
Thanks for visting, i am almost always there at your blog, and love it soooo.

Archana

Vidya Narayanan said...

Beautiful Cakes. I am a food blog addict and i just love your blog. It is a visual treat. I can only imagine how good it will be to eat:) And wishes to you & your hubby that he keep eating all these wonderful dishes you cook for him for many more years to come.
- Vidya Narayanan

Sudarslal said...

Hi Archana,
I just had been to your cake decorating site. Its really amazing.
Wonderful!!!!
All the best for both of you.
Sudarslal

archana said...

Vidya.
Thank you for coming in, and please do visit again. I am so happy that you like the cakes

S chettan,
Thank you so much for coming in, and thanks again for the kind words. Please visit agian

Anonymous said...

You have an outstanding good and well structured site. I enjoyed browsing through it »

yummy yummy food for tummy said...

Hi Archana,
I have to comment on this(even if i am 1yr 3mnths late!)This cake is simply superb..and far frm defects,u hv shaped out a perfect heart wt pleasant decorations! though i cant bake a heart cake on my anniversary, i shall surely ensure that me and my hubby watch this pic on ours! Hope u wont mind! :0 ;)
Purnima.

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