My oldest son celebrated his 10th birthday this week and tonight we went out to eat with our family to honor this milestone! He asked if I would make a chocolate cake like the one I made the other day for the Cub Scout cake walk. One of his favorite games is Angry Birds so I used that as my inspiration for decorating. I've always enjoyed decorating cakes since I was first introduced to it in my early teens. Back in the days of bake sales, my friend, Mary's mom would create really neat ccakes! She had many different Wilton pans and could make just about anything you wanted!
For the bread part of this cake, I made two 9-inch cakes using the Hershey recipe published in another entry. For the icing, I made a triple batch of buttercream. I do this so I'm sure I have enough because you can never get the exact match if you run out of a color and have to tint another batch! For tinting, I use the gel colors as they give you a more consistent color. I learned the recipe when I took the Wilton courses t my local hobby store. The classes are great for any level baker.
Wilton Buttercream Icing:
1 cup solid shortening (I use the Crisco sticks)
1 teaspoon butter flavor extract (you can use clear vanilla also)
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon meringue powder
1/2 lb (4 cups) confectioners sugar
In a large bowl, cream together the shortening, water and extract. Add meringue powder and slowly add the confectioners sugar. Beat on medium for 2 minutes. The icing will be very dry. Add water 1-2 teaspoons at a time. I find that the icing will get to a medium stiffness after about 4-5 teaspoons. Transfer the icing to a lidded airtight bowl. Keep refrigerated when not in use. Reserve 1.5 cups to thin with a little more water. You can use the thinned icing to create a crumb coat on your cake which will allow your decoration to go on more easily and have no bread showing through.