Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Penguin Cake revisited

I didn't expect the penguin cake I made for Hannah's last birthday would be a major source of traffic to this site. But then I didn't expect my daughter's favourite toy would be penguins (now seven in number, including Ruby the wicked emperor penguin who constantly instructs Hannah on naughty stuff to do).

In response to a recent comment here is an approximation of how I put the cake together. The large cake was in a made in an 8 inch round tin, the smaller in a 4 inch. They were then trimmed approximately as illustrated (I suspect I rounded the corners of the body a little more once these cuts were made) :

The offcuts from the big cake were trimmed into approximate feet shapes. Then the cake pieces were covered entirely with appropriately coloured fondant icing. I then trimmed away the icing from the parts of the feet and the head that were going to touch the body so that they could sit snugly in place. I may have glued them in place with jam, I vaguely recall jam being very useful.

The body and head were covered in a chocolate fondant (pre-made) and I mixed up a little food colouring with some fondant to get the feet and beak colour. The white front is a separate piece that sits on top of the body, as do the flippers and the eyes. I recall wanting to inset the white piece into the chocolate body, but at that point it was 12.30 at night and I decided simplicity was OK. The nice thing about sitting one layer on top of another is you can fiddle a little to get it in the right spot. I may have given it a gentle roll with a rolling pin to help the layers hold together once it was all in place.


Anonymous RedDoll said...

I still don't know how I found your blog but I am glad I that I have! My 3yo daughter is also allergic to eggs and nuts but we also get to add orange and corn to that list! I have just spent the better part of my first hour at work reading through entries in your blog and getting more excited about the different recipes! Looking forward to making them!

8:54 am  
Blogger din said...

Hi reddoll, welcome! I think you're only the second person with a child with allergies to have found this blog and commented - I do hope you can find some ideas that help. I imagine with the corn allergy, life would be particularly tricky, what with corn derived ingrediants in everything. All the best,


11:51 pm  
Blogger Check My Tag said...

Sorry for the off topic comment. I was not sure how to leave you an offline message. Since next week is Food Allergy Week in the U.S., I'm inviting all food allergy bloggers and friends to contribute your own personal stories on dealing with food allergies... how you found out that you and/or your child has a food allergy, how you manage your food allergy, some of the things you are doing for Food Allergy Week, and what you want people to know about food allergies. We will post a collection of links to your blogs throughout the week. Interested?

Here's what to do:
1) Visit http://www.checkmytag.com/community.html
2) Let me know you want to join by leaving a comment on today's post (so I can post a link to you!)
3) Spread the word: link to the CMT Community page and/or display our Food Allergy Week banner and/or tell all your pals!
4) Add a post on your blog for Food Allergy Week
5) Stop by our Community page during the week to see your post and read other people's stories.

Hope you'll join us in spreading the word about food allergies...


12:39 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

great blog that i will likely read more later but i'm madly trying to work on a birthday cake (free of peanuts) for this weekend. so, FONDANT does not contain any peanut ingredients, does it? i am fairly confident that it doesn't but i can't seem to find anything out there for sure. thanks!

2:30 pm  
Blogger din said...

Hi Anonymous,

all I can say for sure is that the brand of fondant I used (I think it was Orchard) does not have any nuts. Really all I can say is carefully check the list of ingredients, particularly look for traces of nuts if that is an issue for you, or contact the company that makes it and quiz them about it. Good luck with the cake

9:44 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i will call the company- thanks. but i'm excited that it looks like i'll be able to use fondant.

do you have any experience with nuts other than peanuts? my son is only allergic to peanuts and i hate not being able to give him other nuts for fear of cross contamination. but if the tree nuts were not processed in a facility that also does peanuts, he could eat them. any suggestions?

10:41 am  
Blogger din said...

I must admit I've little experience with other nuts in regard to my daughter's allergy. We had been avoiding all nuts. At her last allergy test Hannah was checked for the first time for allergies to nuts other than peanuts with very mixed results. (See the blog entry I wrote "Hannah is now four" - bizarrely her tests are often on her birthday - not my choice!)

However although I now know she can eat pine nuts and walnuts, I've not felt a need to introduce them to her. The whole thing makes me nervous - though I realise this is irrational.

With regard to cross contamination I guess you just need to get as much information as you can about the food that your interested in. I'm not sure where you're writing from, in Australia the food labeling laws require a company to mention on a food label if there is or may be traces of one of the major food allergens. Otherwise I guess you're best contacting the manufacturer.



11:17 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm going to make this for my boyfriend's 30th birthday. It's fab thanks!

12:47 am  

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