In the spirit of self-promotion (versus the self-loathing I'm also great at) I'm going to write about the Lightning McQueen/Racing cake I made for Samuel's 3rd birthday this weekend. As with so many other things revolving around his birthday, Samuel was pretty clear he wanted a Lightning cake. I snooped around on coolest-cakes.com and found some Cars and Racing cakes that I thought would be pretty easy to do in my novice-ignorant cake decorating state. I picked aspects of the many cakes on the site that I liked and came up with this one. It was super easy to do albeit very time consuming as I piped every little blade of grass on that darn thing.
I started with a basic chocolate cake mix and baked as directed. After cooling I flipped it out on my fancy-schmancy tissue-papered cardboard. I frosted the cake with vanilla frosting and outlined the 3 with a toothpick. Earlier I had blended oreo cookies (minus the icing in the middle) to replicate track asphalt. I filled in the 3 with the oreos. It was a little messy but I knew I would be icing over it so didn't sweat it.
After outlining the 3 with white icing I started the tedious work of piping on the grass. It was well worth the time and tendinitis as it gave the cake depth and detail, if I do say so myself.
14 hours later... (ok, only 30 minutes) after the grass was on I outlined the 3 in white again and added the little road stripes. Finishing touches were checkered flags (top, left), 3 candles and Lighting McQueen baby!! I love that a little matchbox car made this a Lightning McQueen cake. Voila. Oh sweet Samuel, you're so easy to please.
What was awesome was that after we sang him 'Happy Birthday' he, without prompting, stuck his whole face in the cake. How great is that? Its documented on video to blackmail him with down the road.