My niece is turning twelve this week (on my birthday, actually, when I will not be turning that much older,
honest…). I met her when she was six, which means I’ve known her for half her life now! Such a strange thought!
When she asked me to make her cake, all she said was she wanted chocolate, pink, and zebra. I think the black and white zebra with bright pink is fun, but that much food coloring makes my teeth ache! Plus it’s kind of a young look. So I decided to update it a little with brown and cream zebra, ruffles, and pale pink :)
I used the Hershey’s chocolate cake recipe and White Chocolate Buttercream like I used here. I used this Jessicakes tutorial for making the ruffles on the top half. The zebra stripes are the same buttercream recipe, but I used semi-sweet chocolate instead of white and just piped it on in a random stripe pattern. Then I went back with a hot spoon and smoothed out most of the ridges. The last few got a bit sloppy because when you hold a bag full of chocolate frosting for too long, it turns into hot chocolate and is as difficult to pipe on as it sounds!
The flower is gum paste dyed a light pink. I cut out six circles and kind of ruffled them a bit and let them dry overnight. Then I put the brown ball on a toothpick and poked it through one (which I had let dry flat) and arranged the others in a circle around it. I ended up using pink candy melts to glue it all together. This was my first time using gum paste, so it’s a little sloppy, but now I know better for next time! For instance, I would have assembled the flower before it completely dried.
It’s hard to see in the pics, but I used gold food spray paint to mist the ruffles and the flower. In person, that gave it a nice, vintage-y look.
John was so thrilled we FINALLY got to eat the cake he’d been helping make all weekend! I’m impressed with his self-restraint in not messing up my frosting!