Friends, I was lucky enough to take a trip back to New Orleans this past week to celebrate Father’s Day with my dad and to surprise my nieces and nephews! It was wonderful and deliciously warm (everyone is complaining about record heat there, but all I knew is that I didn't have goosebumps once and my nose didn’t run every single day I was there, so I think it was awesome!).
While I was there, my family was celebrating my niece's 11th birthday, and you KNOW I jumped at the chance to make her a birthday cake! The kids are super into cookies and cream right now, so I made sure to put my delicious cookies and cream frosting between the layers of my decadent chocolate cake.
But the real show stopper about this cake was the decoration! (If I do say so myself!) I used American buttercream to decorate the cake since it’s the fastest to make and is the strongest buttercream in my repertoire. The colors were mixed using my Elite Masters powders from The Sugar Art, and I decided to create an ombre/ocean layer theme for the outside. Typically what I like to do for ombre colors is to mix a little extra of my darkest (usually bottom) layer, then add white to create the next color, then add white for the next, and so on.
For this cake, because I wanted to bottom layer to be sort of greenish to represent all the kelp and other plant life at the bottom of the ocean, and wanted the rest of the layers to be more blue hued for the ocean water itself, I started with the green layer for the very bottom layer of piping, then created my own separate blue frosting for the next layer up.
I wanted to be sure that the colors carried through to the top, so I mixed in a little of the green frosting into the blue to give it a deeper color.
The most challenging part of this was that I couldn’t pipe the colors in complete rosettes. I had to pipe the majority of a rosette, but instead of pulling the circle closed, I had to pipe more of a tail off to the opposite side of where a rosette would finish.
It had a great overall effect and one of the first things my younger nephew said when he saw that cake was that it reminded him of the waves on the ocean. #MissionAccomplished
To finish it all off, I piped a white border around the top in sort of a zig-zag manner to give the idea of ocean foam on top of the waves, and I put a few graham crackers through a food processor to create the sand on top of the cake.
A tip for you about the sand - if you ever need to pipe on top of something like this sand or if you covered your cake top in sprinkles… the frosting won’t stick to the cake because the sprinkles and graham cracker crumbs aren’t solidly attached to the cake. If you need to pipe on top of them, use a small spoon and dig a hole into the sprinkles to give the piped frosting something to hold on to as you lift your piping bag away.
Happy eating, y’all!
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