Make the gift of a lifetime for the newlyweds in your life with a homemade birdcage cake. You can use buttercream icing and fondant decorations in any color to coordinate with the wedding scheme and create birds and flowers from gum paste for added flair. If desired, you can pipe a message on the cake using a pastry bag fitted with a round tip.
Things You'll Need
- 3 packages of cake mix
- 2 10-inch round cake pans
- 2 9-inch round cake pans
- 8-inch round oven-safe bowl
- Vegetable shortening
- Wire racks
- Butter cream icing
- 1 plastic or wooden dowels
- Icing spatula
- Icing smoother
- Gum paste birds
- Fondant adhesive
Prepare 3 packages of cake mix in a large mixing bowl according to the instructions on the package. Cover the inside of each cake pan and the round oven-safe bowl with vegetable shortening and a sprinkling of flour.
Fill each pan approximately two-thirds full with cake batter and pour the remaining batter into the oven-safe bowl. Bake the cakes according to the package instructions. Take the cakes out of the oven and transfer them onto wire racks after 15 to 20 minutes. Let the cakes cool for 3 to 4 hours.
Cut off the curved tops from the cakes baked in the cake pans. Do not cut off the top of the cake baked in the oven-safe bowl.
Place one of the 10-inch round cakes on a cake tray and spread a 1/4-inch layer of butter cream icing on top. Place the other 10-inch round cake on top of the iced cake and spread a 1/4-inch layer of icing on top. Place one of the 9-inch round cakes on top and spread a 1/4-inch layer of icing over it. Place the remaining 9-inch cake on top and cover the top with a 1/4-inch layer of icing.
Turn the dome-shaped cake baked in the oven-safe bowl upside down so that the dome is facing upward and place it on top of the stack of cakes. Insert a long plastic or wooden dowel vertically through the center of the cakes to provide support.
Spread a thin layer of buttercream icing over the exposed areas of the cake. Do not worry about filling gaps, this is just a thin coating. Place the cake in the refrigerator for 30 minutes to let the icing firm.
Cover the cake in a thick layer of butter cream icing with an icing spatula. Fill in the gaps between the tiers with the icing so that the cake looks like one giant dome. Smooth the cake with an icing smoother.
Make long strips of fondant to create the birdcage. Roll out the fondant and cut 1/2-inch strips that are the height of the cake. You need 16 strips.
Place the end of a strip at the top center of the cake and run it down one side. Do the same with the remaining strips to make the cage around the cake.
Cut a circle from a piece of fondant that measures 1/2-inch thick and 2 1/2-inches wide and make a ring-shaped handle from another piece of fondant. Place the circle on the top of the cake, over the ends of the fondant birdcage strips. Press the ring-shaped handle on top.
Apply a small amount of fondant adhesive to the back of the fondant or gum paste birds and press them gently against the cake.
Tips & Warnings
- Make your birdcage wedding cake up to four days in advance to allow time to correct any decorating blunders.
- Wedding Cakes You Can Make: Designing, Baking, and Decorating the Perfect Wedding Cake; Dede Wilson
- Dream Wedding Cakes; Debbie Brown
- Photo Credit RAYES/Photodisc/Getty Images
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