Bake O'Clock Special: Halloween Cake How-To!

by Lyndsay of Coco Cake 

I know. I'm a weirdo. Hairy witch CAT cake?

I really don't like the typical Halloweeny type business - orange and black and gory yucky bloody stuff. Why not keep Halloween kind of cute? Kind of hairy? I thought of making a warty-faced witch cake. But then I thought, who wants to bite into a witch's big old wart, even if it's in cake form? Instead, why not bite into a cute little fuzzy cat face... Okay... that doesn't make a whole lot of sense either.

Anyhoo... I present to you, a Coco Cake  how-to! Halloween it up, everyone!

You will need: 

1. Two layers of baked round cake. Bake your cake in two round cake pans according to a recipe's instructions, let cool, level the cake with a serrated knife and you're ready to go! I made an 8 inch dark chocolate cake.
2. 4 cups of buttercream. You will need to frost the middle and sides of the cake plus have enough to pipe hair all over it, so 4 cups should cover it. I made vanilla buttercream and tinted it green with a dab of gel colour.
3. A multi-opening piping tip
4. A piping bag
5. A cake board, cake stand or plate
6. Some fondant, for making the face, ears and hat. You can buy pre-colored fondant, or buy plain white and buy some gel food coloring to color the fondant. Fondant can be purchased at your local cake supply shop or craft megastore in the cake supply section.
7. An offset spatula for frosting your cake - not crucial, you can also use a butter knife!

Okay! Here we go! I made a custom cake board by cutting out a piece of polka dot craft paper to the size of a 10 inch round cake board and glued it on top! I also made a custom Happy Halloween circular "flag" which I will tape to a toothpick and plunk into the side of the cake once it's finished.

Special piping tip: I call this the "hairy" tip or the "grass" tip. I think it's official name is the multi-opening tip (BORING) ... you can get this at a craft supply megastore in the cake section, or at a cake supply shop! Or, online at a place like Scoop N Save in Canada, or Bake It Pretty in the US of A! 

I bought those horrid green disposable piping bags in bulk, but you can also buy them through the above sources. I need to get some normal piping bags. Those green ones are so ugly for photos.

A drawing! I always do a little sketcheroo of my cakes. Heehee! A drawing is great as you can refer to it as you're working. Or you can freestyle it. Up to you.

Place one layer of your cake on your cake board. I always blob some buttercream underneath to stick it to the cake board and hold it in place when I frost. You can also tuck little pieces of parchment paper or wax paper just under the cake so the cake board doesn't get all buttercreamed out. Frost the top of the cake layer evenly, as this will be the cake's filling.

Place the second cake layer on top, serrated side down, lightly press down into the buttercream. Now, starting at the top of the second layer, frost away!

Frost the entire cake. This is called the "crumb coat", where you trap in all those pesky crumbs with buttercream. Usually I chill the cake in the fridge at this point to set the crumb coat and then apply another layer of buttercream so it looks all smooth and non-crumby. However, since we're making this into a hairy cat, you won't see the crumbs in the final product so I didn't bother with frosting it further.

Snip the tip off of your piping bag and place the multi-opening tip in. Fill 'er up, sir! I place the bag in a yogurt container for easy-filling. Twist the top of the bag and start squeezing out the hairy buttercream times!

Remove the parchment paper strips. Now, with the piping bag, squeeze out some hair and tart from the bottom and pipe a line of hairiness up to the top. You can practice piping first on a plate until you get the hang of it if you wish. Go all the way around the cake in this same way... then pipe the top of the cake, too!

Now you can make all the parts for your cat face. Black whiskers, eyes, two round circles for cheeks, a little pink nose, a tongue, a witch's hat and two ears. To adhere the ears and hat to the cake, I place wooden skewers into the ears and hat, then plunk into the cake wherever I want the ears and hat to be...

Place all your fondant elements on the cake... pipe some additional hair onto the ears after you've put the wooden skewered fondant ears in place... and now you have...


Side view! Pretty hairy, eh.

Hope you all enjoyed the cake tutorial!

Happy Halloween... !

xo Lyndsay

Lyndsay is a self-taught baker and subsequent enthusiastic blogger. She loves makin' foods and bakin' goods, and shares her stories, recipes and foodstuffs on Poppytalk! Her other work can be found on her cake blog: Coco Cake, her ice cream blog: Ice Cream by Coco Cake and her food oddities and delights blog: Trompe Chomp!

Jan Halvarson


Cannella&Pois said...

Beautiful cake and amazing tutorial!! I love it

Maria Maria Maria said...

Sooooo cute! Thanks for the recipe! I have some caramel apple recipes on my blog today if you're interested :)


Unknown said...

Haha. Well, the name may be weird, but it's a super adorable cake!

Coco Cake Land said...

@canella, thank you!!

@maria, thanks so much - i'm heading over to check out the caramel apples!

@bethany - thank you! ^__^

gretchen said...

wow. green hair is weird. But it's totally handsome!

Carol from OY! blog said...

Im in love! that is so creative and cute. Lovely creation.

Anonymous said...

THAT IS SO ADORBS! need. to. make. it. now.

Coco Cake Land said...

@gretchen ... haha! ^__^ handsome indeed...

@carol - thanks so much!

@jazzmin - if you make it, please let me know!! ^__^

xo lyndsay

Unknown said...

first off, this is so cute!!! 2nd-I'm pregnant, and now I am craving this cake. It looks so delicious. Now what can I find in my fridge that will replace this craving since I can't eat that cake? lol. It came out great. Thanks for sharing the tutorial, much easier to do than I would've thought. Thanks! Anyways, if you get the chance, pass by my blog and check it out... maybe follow if you like! =D


Unknown said...

Do the fondant details ever melt with the butter cream underneath?