This is a bit of a brag post. Not very humble of me, but oh well.
A few weeks ago my sister in law asked me to make a birthday cake for my nephew. He is really into Super Mario right now, and so he had requested a Mario cake. I knew that there was no way that I could draw him freehand, especially as I don’t have the right tools and those Cakemate Scribblers are hardly accurate enough to write “Happy Birthday” let alone draw a cartoon. I didn’t really want to resort to the “toy-on-top-of-the-cake” strategy, especially as we don’t own any Super Mario toys and I am the world’s cheapest cake decorator.
But I do own sugar, and food colouring, and a printer.
So, I made up my own coloured sugar (found through Pinterest, obviously) and found a good picture of Mario. It had to be old-school because the new versions of Mario have too much shading and I’m not that dedicated! I figured out which colours I needed (yellow/skin tone. blue, red, and brown – cocoa powder) and made up the coloured sugar. Then I printed out four copies of the picture and cut out a different colour from each sheet. These were my templates. After the cake was ready (a from scratch silver-white cake with marshmallow frosting) I started to put Mario together.
The marshmallow frosting was a little sticky, so I started out by dusting a light layer of icing sugar over the surface of the cake. (I should say that the icing sugar was Darren’s suggestion. Smart man). The icing sugar layer allowed me to put the paper templates on top without messing up the surface of the cake.
Then I started with the coloured sugar. Yellow sugar, then the red, then the blue, and finally the cocoa powder.
I ended up using the white Scribbler icing for Mario’s hands. They aren’t exactly as they were in the cartoon, but close enough. And it looked a whole lot better than outlining the hands in green Scribbler, which was my first idea. (By the way, I started to write “Happy Birthday” on the bottom of the cake in green Scribbler, but it looked so absolutely awful beside the amazing Mario that I scraped it all off and re-dusted the cake again with icing sugar. Yep, I’m that picky about my cake fonts.)
So here it is, completed.
The cake was a hit. And how did it taste? I have no idea. Ben was sick that day and we had to rush home because his fever had spiked again. Poor kid.
My favourite thing about making this cake was that I was able to make a great looking cake without spending a fortune on decorating supplies. Take that Cakemate and Wilton!
Incidentally, I hope that when I am 85 years old I will be able to celebrate with an Egyptian-themed birthday party and epic cake.