Monday, February 13, 2012

Blue zebra cake

Blue zebra cake that I did this past weekend for my niece's 11th birthday. (She's a tween!!!!!)

It all started with the prep work: making a zebra out of gumpaste:

I also made a bow out of blue fondant and let it dry for a week, and also made some flowers with blue fondant and tiny white flowers. I had an idea about how to use them, but it really didn;t come together until I assembled the cake (like always). Each tier had three layers of cake. Each cake from each tier had a different size. So the bottom tier was composed of one 10", one 9" and one 8". The second tier was one 8", one 7" and one 6". the top tier was 6", 5", and 4". The idea was to do a sort of topsy turvy without too much carving. I ended up doing some carving to make them with the bottom layer smaller than the top one:

The bottom tier was crumb-coated with buttercream. The other two were crumb-coated with chocolate ganache.

The first tier is basic yellow cake with a twist. At the last minute I decided to dye blue two of the layers.

Funky looking cake, right?

The middle tier had two layers of chocolate and one layer of chocolate. The top tier tier was all chocolate.

Covering the top tier in fondant turned out to be the most difficult to cover. It ended up with some mistakes which I was able to cover with the zebra stripes.

The other two tiers were "easier" to cover, but the problem if having the bottom smaller than the top was a factor when covering them. But I got them done! Then it was a matter of adding the zebra stripes. Also, I realized that I didn't have enough blue to cover the bottom tier, so I decided to go with white for the bottom tier, and black for the middle and play with the stripes.  It turned out to be a good decision.

I then drove to my brother's to finish the cake there. My brother, s-i-l and niece were out, but my 22 year old nephew was there, so I put him to work making balls out of fondant. Good thing too, because making that many balls is a PITA.

And once I put the middle tier on top of the bottom, that's when I decided how to use the flowers. My nephew came out with how to put the balls on the top tier.

In the end the cake was a success. One of the moms asked me about how much would it cost to make another (I answered at least $250) and she took my card. As a "marketing tool" I brought some of my cards and left them in the table by the cake.

And this is what was left after singing "Happy Birthday":


  1. Cake decorating is serious work! I had an aunt who used to do wedding cakes. There were some she put 90 - 100 hrs into. They were gorgeous. But wow, that's a lot of work! I'm impressed, Arlene! And so looking forward to my birthday cake by Arlene! :-)

    1. I'll do my best!!! BTW, will the Easter weekend work for you????