Smell the Flowers
cake by Geraldine Kidwell
photos by Stringer Photography
Begin with a sheet of aluminum foil long enough to encircle the edge of a 1 1/2-quart glass bowl. Fold it in half lengthwise, twice, then tape it securely around the rim of the bowl, extending the sides upward to create a foil collar. Line the inside of the bowl with clear plastic wrap.
Tint 2/3-pound fondant soft pink—a different color can be used if desired—and roll it out a little thicker than what would be used to cover a cake. Cut 6 petals, 9 inches long and 4 inches wide, from the fondant with a craft knife. Each petal should cover less than 1/3 of the bowl. Place three of the petals, equally spaced, into the prepared bowl. Offset the remaining three petals between those of the first set. All of the petals should overlap at the bottom of the bowl, creating a large cup. Allow the petals to dry overnight.
Split the remaining fondant in half. Tint one half gray and set aside the rest. Roll three balls of fondant the same size as the gumballs. These balls will be used for the head, legs and arms of the mouse. Roll a third ball of gray fondant twice the size of a gumball.
To form the body, hold the larger ball of fondant in the palm of one hand, and firmly press a gumball into its center until the gumball can be felt though the fondant. Work the fondant around the ball, then gather the excess fondant above the ball and elongate to form the torso. Break a piece of spaghetti in half, set the torso flat, and insert both pieces into the torso, allowing each to stick out from the torso 1/4 inch.
Divide one of the small balls into two pieces. Be sure to cover any fondant you are not working with to prevent drying. Roll one pice into a very smooth ball, and then into a sausage. Bend the sausage in half to form the elbow. Model the hand, separating fingers with the craft knife. Repeat with the remaining half of the fondant ball to make the other arm. Repeat the process with another ball of fondant to form the legs. Attach each limb, before it dries, by moistening the ends and pressing them to the torso.
Geraldine Suggests: Now would be a good time to give our mouse a piece of cheese. Tint a pinch of fondant yellow, modeling it into a triangle shape. Poke the cheese with a craft knife, then attach to one of the mouse's hands with a drop of water.
Place the last gray fondant ball in a palm, then insert and cover the remaining gumball in the same manner as step 3. Once the gumball is covered, Use a thumb and forefinger to model the snout of the mouse. Using the back of a small paintbrush, make a hole for the mouth. Paint the bottom of the hole red for a tongue, and add whites above the snout for the eyes. Set the head aside until the color dries. Pinch two pieces of gray fondant, flatten, and mold them into two round ears. Paint the insides of the ears red, smudging the color with a fingertip.
After the eyes and mouth have dried, add details to the eyes with a food coloring marker. Attach the ears to the top of the head by moistening one edge and pressing them into the head. Attach the mouse's head to its torso by moistening the bottom of the head and inserting it onto the protruding spaghetti pieces. Set the mouse aside to dry.
On a piece of wafer paper, draw colorful butterflies with food coloring markers. Be sure to use bright colors such as yellow, red, and orange. Cut out each butterfly with scissors, then thinly coat each one with clear piping gel. After the piping gel has saturated the wafer paper, gently bend the wings upward, and place them in a former of bent cardboard to dry.
After the petals have dried, remove the foil collar from the bowl, and allow additional drying time. Ice a cake on a piece of foil with pink buttercream, round side up. Remove the petals from the bowl by lifting the plastic wrap. Remove the plastic wrap and place the petals on a cake board or plate. Place the iced cake into the flower, round side down, adding slight pressure to secure it in place. Add a touch of green or yellow buttercream to the top of the cake to resemble pollen.
Roll four tiny balls of fondant, each about the size of a pea. Insert a piece of spaghetti into each, then roll each to form long sausages around the spaghetti sticks. To add color, roll the stamen in powdered food coloring.
Geraldine Suggests: Stamens come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Be creative with your stamens.
Place the mouse on the cake, securing it with buttercream. Insert each stamen into the center of the cake, within the pollen
FINISHED and Beatuful!
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