Cake Mixes: $7.50
Frosting & Pudding: $8.00
Pretzels & Twizzlers: $5.50
Dye & Topping: $8.50
Making an epic cake with my son: Pricele$$
That’s right, ladies and gentlemen, it’s time yet again for the annual Cub Scout Blue & Gold Banquet! For those who don’t know, this is the celebration of the birth of Cub Scouts. In the local Wallowa County Pack 562, the Blue & Gold Banquet doubles as an annual fundraiser through a cake auction.
Now, an ordinary “bake sale” would tender the amount of excitement (or funds) that are needed, so of course, we take things to “the next level.” This year’s theme was “National Treasures.” My son chose Mount St. Helens. Mostly because volcanoes are just about the coolest thing for a 6-year old. It helps that he was learning about it at school, too
Now I’ve heard the parental toils about making flying trapezes and all sorts of other elaborate concoctions, and I have to admit, I was intimidated. An iced drawing of a volcano was NOT going to cut the mustard, so I devised a plan to build a volcano out of completely edible ingredients. (The rules state NO toothpicks, structures, etc.) I didn’t want to get too carried away, though, as I’ve heard that cakes can go for hundreds of dollars, so I don’t want it to be too attractive…
My son requested chocolate, so I got three mixes & three icings of that variety. A bright pink cherry caught my eye for the lava, so I grabbed some food coloring to modify it. More ingredients to follow. I got my helper after work Friday, and I had to be there at 10 the next morning to setup, so this had to be a 1-Night-Wonder. Oh, and I had to fit in a potluck dish somehow. I had a late night ahead of me…
I started with a 13X9 base. I wanted it to be firm, so I added some chocolate pudding mix to all the batches. Tanner learned how to properly crack eggs, and lick the beaters. While it was baking, I whipped up a quick dinner and did dishes while he took a shower. After dinner, I started the mountain by using a round pan for a middle, and a pyrex bowl for the top.
With the top in the oven, I jiggled the base loose from it’s pan-prison and tried frosting it. Next to the wood stove, our thermometer read 85 degrees, but the frosting was still stubborn, so I “nuked” it for 10 seconds, perfect!
When the top was done, I placed them outside to cool. Tanner and I cleaned and snuggled up to a show while we waited. I also took this time to adjust the magmicing. I added a whole bunch of red, and some yellow, and was able to coax the cupid pink into an orange-ish state.
Now the peak was cool, so I tried placing it upside down. It didn’t really agree with this configuration, but I figured gravity would win in the end. I carved out the crater and blast wave. I did my best to follow a diagram and picture I found on the Internet.
Unfortunately, it produced a tear in the back side. Initially, I was horrified, then figured it made a nice fissure. After all, this was an erupting volcano. It also produced a nice slice, so my son and I could perform some “quality assurance.” Icing the delicate peak was difficult and required a heavy-handed application of chocolate icing.
Next was the lava flow. We got a little carried away with the lava, but what do you expect, we’re boys! To add texture, I had gotten some twisted twizzlers. I managed to make the crown spout a little while I was at it.
At this point, it was well after bed time, so I retired my son for the night, and finished up on my own. Powdered sugar made a nice snow cap on the sides. Also, I had seen plenty of pictures where the blast wave had severed and de-barked all the trees in its path. Pretzel sticks did quite nicely for that. I finished up with some evergreen icing trees around the back, and called it quits.
Now there was only one hurdle remaining, “Where do I put it?” Let’s just say that many left-overs and old condiments sacrificed their chance at a new purpose, by making way for Mount St. Helens, which required an entire shelf in my fridge.
I’ve tidy’d up, made a double-batch of pasta salad, and made a blog post since then, so I’ll be going to bed now. It’s off to the auction tomorrow!