Life's better with cake and a sprinkle of fairy dust
Someone the husband’s sister knew from work was attending a vodka party at the Singapore Night Festival and requested this Absolut Vodka cake for her fiance, who’s a fan of the spirit. Once upon a (long, long) time, during my wild Uni partying days, I was sort of a fan too. It was the IN thing to drink. Still is, apparently. However, my short-lived romance with Absolut came to a tragic end after one particularly nasty brush with an entire litre of duty-free Absolut Mango and three adventurous mates on a weekend getaway in Phuket. Dried mango-flavoured vomit in the hair over breakfast remains my worst vacation memory ever.
Let’s get down to making this awesome fun cake. I made a template by tracing around an bottle of Absolut Raspberri onto the back of a piece of cake cardboard and cutting that out. Flip it over to the shiny side and voila, template and cake board to build our vodka cake on.
It’s an Absolut Vodka cake with… absolut-ly no vodka in it. I baked 2 eight-inch square dense chocolate cakes, halved them lengthwise and stacked three of the halves on the cake template with salted caramel buttercream to form the body of the bottle. The remaining half was cut into little blocks and “glued” with buttercream to form the neck and shoulder of the bottle.
Wish I’d taken a picture before digging in so eagerly with my serrated knife. To carve the shape of the bottle, I rounded off the sides of the cake to form the body, neck and shoulders of the cake. On hindsight, I could have baked the cake layers a little thinner so the bottle wouldn’t feel so clunky.
With the Tulip Ham cake, I had crumb coated the cake with buttercream, and then, ganache. The ganache could not get a good ‘grip’ on the smooth buttercream and it was messy and laborious to get an even finish. This time, I decided to leave out buttercream and crumb coat with just ganache. It was so much easier and I was even able to get a second coat of ganache on.
Next I rolled out a rectangle of white fondant and draped it over the whole cake. To form the little crest with the old man’s face logo on it, I placed a small ring of sugarpaste where I wanted before covering the cake, then smoothed the fondant around the shape of the ring. Trimmed away the excess and we were ready to roll.
While waiting for the fondant to dry out a bit before adding the details, I made this little fellow out of gumpaste. I love how he sits like a boss.
He made a nice companion to the otherwise very lonely-looking bottle of vodka.
Instead of the Absolut logo of an old man’s face, I decided to place the couple’s initials M and L in the crest instead. The final touches were added: sugarpaste letters, piped royal icing script, edible markers and some edible shimmer dissolved in almond extract to highlight the bottle cap and crest. Done!