Ipso Fatto Instant Photos: Josh Turns Seven

Last week my cousin's son Josh turned seven and we got together with family to celebrate at a pool party. Josh loves vanilla (in contrast to his chocolate-loving older sister, who got a Brooklyn blackout cake when she turned eight a few months ago) so I decided to go with an old stand-by that I have made for countless birthdays: Restaurant Eve Cake. I've been trying to step up my cake-decorating game so I wanted to try covering the cake in fondant, using the rolled fondant recipe from Rose Levy Beranbaum's Cake Bible. I flavored the fondant with orange extract (I would have used lemon extract except I just ran out) and to reinforce the orange flavor I added some orange extract to the Restaurant Eve buttercream recipe as well.
I hadn't given any thought to the design or color scheme of the cake in advance so the end result was pretty much accidental. (In retrospect, I'm wondering if I have a subconscious preference for yellow-orange-green cake color schemes, because this cake reminds me of the birthday cake I made for my friend Dorothy -- also a Restaurant Eve cake -- back in 2010.) I didn't have any trouble covering the cake with an unblemished layer of fondant and I'm kicking myself that I never tried this technique before now; I always thought it would be prohibitively difficult but watching a few YouTube videos ahead of time made it fairly easy. I had less success hand cutting fondant letters to spell out "Josh" for the top of the cake, but I was still pretty satisfied with the final product. Plus, the pool party was held at noon on a very hot and oppressively humid day, and even after keeping the cake outside (in a cardboard bakery box, in the shade) for more than 90 minutes before serving, it was still in perfect condition.
I really loved the way that the cake looked after it was sliced -- the fondant just made everything look so nice and neat. And while I didn't eat the fondant (although it tasted fine -- I just thought it was sugar overkill), a lot of guests at the party did. I was a big fan of the orange-flavored buttercream with the vanilla cake. This was a delicious cake and the birthday boy gave it a literal thumbs up. I couldn't have been more pleased with my first effort with fondant.

Recipe: "Restaurant Eve's Cake" from the April 23, 2006 Washington Post.


Louise said…
Your cake looks wonderful and I'm happy the birthday boy appreciated it. I've never tried fondant, but it's now going on my "TO-BAKE" list. I can't believe I've had The Cake Bible almost thirty years and never gave fondant a try. I've never made the Restaurant Eve cake either, although I've had the recipe for ages. I like what you did with adding the orange extract.
Sally said…
this looks amazing! if I were going to make chocolate frosting with it, which frosting recipe would you use? Thanks!
Thanks, Sally! Hm, since I've been using The Cake Bible so much lately, I would probably use Rose Levy Beranbaum's chocolate mousseline or chocolate neoclassic buttercream. But I think this cake would stand up to basically any type of frosting.