Brittany Campbell
art director + designer


Courtney's Birthday Cake

Tomorrow we're celebrating one of my favorite people's birthdays! And tonight I made a cake. I decided to try and be artsy with it and this is what I came up with. But before you all start calling me a Susie Homemaker I should warn you that I made this cake right after I got home from watching Django Unchained. So thanks to my love of Tarantino movies, this cake may a little agressive. No I'm kidding. It's not. But I just wanted to tell you that I went and saw Django and I loved it and you should all go see it because it makes me want to become a vigilante. But instead I went home and made a cake. There's always tomorrow.

ANYWAY- I started by making a three layer chocolate cake. Full disclosure, I used a box mix because it's a lot faster and my record of making edible boxed cakes is a lot better than my record for making edible cakes made from scratch. I glued each layer together with buttercream frosting (made from scratch, thank you very much) and put it in the freezer.

Then I went and saw Django.

Then I came home and took the cake out of the fridge. I froze the cake because it's easier to frost when the cake is colder. When the cake is at room temp. the cake is more like a sponge and can sometimes get crumbs in the frosting.

I took the frosting and added a few drops of red and yellow food coloring to create a coral-ish pink. Then I put a light layer of frosting on the cake.

I used a leaf tip with the frosting and created a ruffle around the top of the cake. I made 3 laps around the cake with the same color of frosting. I then added a few more drops of red food coloring to the frosting and took a few more laps around the cake with the leaf tip. I then added a few more drop of red to the frosting and took the darkest pink and took laps around the cake until it was completely covered. I then took the darkest pink and wrote "Happy Birthday Courtney" on top of the cake.

Writing on the top of the cake was very frustrating. Maybe because I'm a perfectionist but I rewrote it 4 times. That meant that each time I messed up, I had to take a toothpick and remove the frosting very carefully in order to not mess up the layer of frosting beneath the writing. In order to make a baseline to anchor my letters, I took a piece of paper and took the edge and made a thin indent line in the frosting. The line is still there if you looks very carefully. Usually if you do this you can smooth out the line with a few drops of water but the top of the cake had a texture to it so I didn't want it to be completely smooth so I left the lines because you can't really see them.

I like making cakes. My mom and my grandmother decorate wedding cakes and they've taught me a few things. Actually, in middle school I took a cake decorating class from the woman who taught my grandma how to decorate. I'd like to get more into it and practice more but when I'm done decorating I have a whole cake and I don't want to eat it. At least, not by myself. I guess I should start attending more birthday parties.