An Orange Birthday

A friend of a friend posted on Mom-mail that she needed a Goldfish-cracker shaped cake for her 5 year old’s birthday. Did anyone know of anyone that could do that? My good friend-who-hates-hoodies turned me in and before I knew it I had been talked into accepting my first commissioned cake.

As most of you know, I have had years of experience with the little fish-shaped crackers. If left to his own devices, the O-man would survive on a diet of Goldfish crackers and orange juice, with some pretzels and potato chips thrown in for good measure. Turning this knowledge into a cake shouldn’t be too big a problem, should it?

I figured I would make it for cost, and seeing as how this person was nice enough to pay to go the Toga party earlier this year, I wanted to keep the costs down. I found a nifty recipe for marshmallow fondant on the web, thus making the giant quantities required much less spendy. I always use boxed cake mixes. People always rave about them. Must be something about them being wrapped in nice packages.

I completely destroyed the first batch of cake. I was rushing and freaked out and forgot everything I had learned in the past and tried to shape the cake before I’d put the layers together. It was an unmitigated disaster and ended up being a lovely mound of cake bits in a casserole pan for the kids to eat/decorate.

Round two went much better. I made the two layers and then stuck them together with a good batch of chocolate buttercream: the glue that holds heaven together. After getting the shape right, it only took three tries to get the enormous fondant skin on the cake.

The boys and I put some colorful ribbons of fondant around and on the cake to break up the orange a little and it was done.

I also did a few cupcakes just in case

The fondant goldfish on the cupcakes were shiny, because I made the mistake of putting them in the fridge. When they come out they sweat, and the marshmallow fondant seems to sweat more than the traditional kind.

I was sure I would misspell the name, and double-checked it at least 3,000 times. The worst part of the whole experience was delivering the cake. I was terrified I would drop it or trip or in some other way cause it to be not what it was when I left the house.

Everyone seemed to like the cake, and since she paid me I am now a professional something, which feels alright.

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