Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Rose cupcake bouquet

updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com

People love cupcakes! They look cute, you can top them with anything, and they are easy for guests to help themselves.
A wonderful way to display the cupcakes is in a bouquet. There are so many beautiful ways to ice and put together a bouquet. I decided to get creative, and this is what I ended up with.

Cupcake bouquets make great presents, or beautiful (edible) centerpieces for any party or celebration. I think a large cupcake bouquet or lots of smaller bouquets could even look very elegant for a wedding.

I really enjoyed making this bouquet of cupcake flowers as a congratulations present for a friend who just started her own business.

rosebouqet If you would like to know how I made this cupcake bouquet or would like to give it a go yourself, check out my tutorial.
If you like what you see, please share!

Monday, 30 July 2012

Smash It! Pinata Dinosaur Nest Cake

My son is turning 1!
Time to make a cake! 

updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com
Flicking through 'Kids' Party Cakes' by the Australian Women's Weekly, I stumbled upon the 'Party Pinata' cake. I thought "This is perfect! He loves to smash stuff!". The only problem: the cake in the book doesn't quite go with a dinosaur theme. I thought, 'if I could make two chocolate bowls and attach them together with a toy inside, it would make a perfect Dinosaur Egg for him to smash'.
6 blocks of chocolate later, I came to the conclusion this is NOT going to work the way I want it to. 

Back to square one. I wanted a cake that he could smash, and I wanted a dinosaur theme! I couldn't find anything that matched that description online or in any of my books. I spent some time 'googling' to learn what a dinosaur nest really looks like. It turns out they have lots of eggs in a nest, not just one. 

Rummaging through my cupboards I found these small bowls and had a light-bulb moment. It was perfect! I would make fondant dinosaur eggs and fill them with lots of colorful lollies. 
I wasn't sure if eggs made of fondant would smash quite like the chocolate, but it was certainly worth the risk. It turns out they smash brilliantly! I mixed the fondant with some tylose powder to help it dry out and they took a few days to dry properly.

The eggs had some obvious flaws, such as the joins and marks where I didn't smooth the fondant quite right. This is probably the wrong thing to do, but once the eggs were dry, I wet them a little bit and rolled them in corn flour (some needed more water and corn flour than others). This rounded out the eggs and gave them a rough egg look. 

I made some sticks from fondant and crumbled some chocolate mud cake to use as dirt. This is what it looked like when it was put together.

I loved the reaction of guests when they saw the cake, many overlooking it as a decoration.
It was a complete surprise to the guests, when we cracked the eggs open and all the colour burst out! 

The kids absolutely loved it!

I had such a wonderful time making this cake. What can I do next...?

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Flower Pot Cake For Garden Themed Birthday

updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com

I wanted to do something special for my daughter's first birthday. I decided that I would make a potted plant cake. 

I knew what I wanted to do, but had no idea where to begin, or how it would work out. That didn't stop me though, I just started putting all the elements together and 'problem solved' as I went along. I should probably point out, I didn't even know what fondant was called when I made this. I just referred to it as... 'that white icing you can roll out, like they use on lots of wedding cakes'. 
I was gobsmacked when some guests couldn't find the cake on the table. They kept trying to look behind the flower pot...
1st Birthday Cake
While sugar flowers can look AMAZING, I have no idea how to make them (I will learn one day). Fresh flowers seem to make a regular appearance on wedding cakes, so why not on a birthday cake? I found these gorgeous orange double gerberas that had a bit of shine to them. Mixing them with some greenery really finished off the arrangement and wrapping the whole thing with floral tape held them nicely in place. 
Once the cake is made you can just push them into the center of the cake and the cake holds them securely in place. There is no need to cut a hole or anything. Just make sure there is enough stem on the flowers to reach the bottom of the cake.
The 'pot' was made from a single chocolate mud cake. I didn't use any filling layers as the cake is very yummy and moist on its own and I was scared it would move or be unstable. I put double the mix into the cake tin. To ensure the tin was high enough for the extra mix, I lined it with baking paper, so the paper was double the height of the tin. I used two layers of baking paper for a bit of extra strength.
The 'pot' was going to just be covered in fondant. However, I realised that the crumbs falling from the cake as I carved away, looked like dirt! What a great find. Once I put the flowers in and sprinkled some 'dirt' on top of the pot, it made the whole thing look much more real.

As we cut into the cake, it started to look a lot like a broken pot, with all the dirt falling out. This is definitely one of my all time favorites!

Fondant can be very forgiving. If you get any tears or holes when covering a cake, you can patch it up with some more fondant of the same colour and rub the edges until it joins together. The thicker it is the better this works. Patching won't look as smooth as getting the fondant on all in one piece, but you can always arrange the cake so that the patch ends up at the back or hidden by a decoration (eg one of the leaves could be hanging down in front of the pot hiding a mark in the fondant).
You can also 'patch' it by cutting a feature shape out of a contrasting colour and sticking it over the top.

I wish I took more pictures of the process to share with you. If you want to ask me any questions about how I made this cake, I will do my best to answer them for you.

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Chai Latte Cupcakes, Mmmm... So delicious!

updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com

Mmmm... So delicious! These Chai Latte cupcakes are the perfect 'adult cupcake'. If you would like to try something different to chocolate, or vanilla cupcakes. Give these a try!

The recipe is from; VEGAN CUPCAKES - take over the world! by Isa Chandra Moskowitz & Terry Hope Romero. The recipes in this book are divine! 
(I have no affiliation, they really are just great recipes).

I am not vegan so I don't have a lot of the ingredients in my house, so I will substitute them with dairy products. ie, I will substitute soy milk or rice milk with cows milk. They taste great both ways.

Icing Recipe

I have never done any piping and I want to learn! I thought I would start with a simple swirl on top of the cupcakes. The chai latte cupcake recipe in the book doesn't have an icing that can be piped, so I made my own, that I think goes really well with the cupcakes. It pipes well too!

Here is my recipe.


  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1 tea bag (black tea)
  • 5 tblsp all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of butter (cut into cubes and loosely packed) 
  • 2/3 cup of icing sugar (not icing mixture)
  • 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp cocoa
  • 1/4 tsp ground cardamon 


Warm the milk in a saucepan until nearly boiling. Place the teabag in the hot milk, remove from heat and cover. Allow to sit for 10 minutes. Squeeze the teabag to remove the milk. Measure again, and add milk if less than 1 cup.
Add the cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamon and flour into the milk. Whisk together, until smooth. Return to medium heat and keep whisking until it gets really thick. Remove from heat, and place in the fridge to cool completely.
With an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Add cooled flour/milk mixture, vanilla, and cocoa. Mix on medium to high until it looks like whipped cream.
It is now ready to pipe.

This recipe is not super sweet. I found it suited the cupcakes really well, but if you like your sugar, you can certainly add more to your taste.


Curved Topsy Turvy Tired Cake - A Fairy House

updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com

My mother is crazy-in-love with fairies, so for her birthday party she had a fancy dress 'fairy party'! I decided my present would be her cake!

The design

It took me quite a while and several drawings to decide on something I'd be happy with. I wanted something a bit different to the pink mushrooms I had seen. I took a bit of this and a bit of that from cakes I liked and this is what I ended up with. 
What do you think?
Fairy House - Finished 
Coming up with the design and seeing it come to life, is the best part of decorating cakes!
The Fairy House cake was a surprise for my mother. I'm not sure what she was expecting, but when she saw the cake for the first time she was gobsmacked! 
The cake looked great among all the fairies and garden creatures at the party.  I received a lot of great feedback on this cake. It was an absolute hit!

The cake

Here is a picture of the fairy house I made, IN THE FRIDGE! It makes me cringe when I think of how much the fondant was sweating. I spent a lot of time dusting on extra sugar to absorb the moisture! It only seemed to make it worse. The red colours ran and made a mess! That is one mistake I will never make again. I won't be putting fondant in the fridge!
The night before the party was a very, very late one! When the early morning hours started to roll around, I coerced family to sit with me and roll 100's of different sized fondant balls. We turned up the music and had a few laughs while rolling all the left-over colours.
Using cookie cutters on the stars and hearts made decorating this cake a lot easier than my last cake. However the leaves, vines, swirls, etc were all quite time consuming. I only had very primitive tools at my disposal.
I still have no idea how this cake survived a 2.5 hour drive? It had no supports. The whole thing was just layers of cake sitting on top of each other. I don't even think I used any sugar glues to stick them together. I was just really lucky!

Share with me

updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com

Friday, 20 July 2012

Mad Hatters Topsy Turvy Cake

updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com

A good friend was having a 'mad hatters' themed birthday party. Flicking through some wedding cake books, I saw some wonderful topsy turvy cakes and thought... 'how hard can it be!' I asked my friend if I could make her cake and she was more than happy to let me make anything I liked. Knowing nothing about cakes or decorating (other than what I saw flipping through a couple wedding mags), I purchased some ingredients and the afternoon before the party I set about baking. Needless to say it was a long night!

(my first cake!)
This was a fine example of me getting carried away and 'jumping in the deep end'. With only an idea of what I wanted to make and next to no knowledge I went straight to the shops and got stuck in! I had no idea about fondant, so I used marzipan. I tried icing the cake while it was hot, as there was no time to let it cool. I cut everything out with a kitchen knife (the only 'decorating tool' I knew of), and I managed to find a small handful of floral wire from a florist.

Anyway, now I know a 'few' things about cakes and decorating, I am gobsmacked that it turned out as good as it did, and survived the car ride to her party.

I was exhausted, but it was a lot of fun to make! I also really enjoyed seeing the reaction of all our friends when they saw it.

Thursday, 19 July 2012


updates at Gobsmackedcakes.com

Hello and Welcome to my first ever post!

Let me tell you a little about me and how I came to start this blog.

I love getting elbow deep in creativity and am always thinking and designing in my head. I like to do now, and read latter... Basically I will have a good crack at just about anything, and have a tendency to get carried away (especially when I get to be creative).

Whenever I choose to make a cake friends and family often say things like "You should start a business" or "Wow! You could sell that". As much as I would like to do nothing but bake and decorate, I definitely do not have the time to run and manage a successful business with frequent deadlines. I am however very tempted, because I just love a good excuse to get creative and make a fun cake. Now I have the perfect excuse!

I have only designed and made a handful of cakes, but I have learnt quite a bit. There is still so much for me to learn and I want to know more!
This is a record of my journey as I discover the world of everything cake.

Whether you bake cakes, eat cakes, or just like looking at pretty cakes, come with me and share my journey of discovery. You never know, you might just get inspired!
You are welcome to copy, share, re-post, or use any of my cakes as inspiration, but if you do please give credit and link back to this blog. Thank you.

If you have any tips, advice or just like my cakes please share!