Rapunzel Cake Adventures

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So I spent a large part of this weekend making a cake for my friend's adorable sprite of daughter. She was turning four, and desperately wanted a Rapunzel party. Kids are happy with any cake, any celebration, of course. They're awesome and really easy to please that way. But when you can create something really special, the kids can tell. I love being able to do that for a child.
 

Rapunzel Cake, decorated in fondant with gumpaste accents.

 

 

 

 

 
I tried making homemade fondant (using this, my favorite recipe) using my KitchenAid mixer and the dough hook for the first time to knead it all together. It worked brilliantly, and made much less mess in less time than usual, but I need some practice. When I'm not kneading it by hand, I don't get that feel when the texture is just right and it's time to stop incorporating powdered sugar. The green was definitely too dry, and I barely managed to make it work to cover the hill. I still had some cracks, so it's a good thing I tend to make cakes with very busy designs ("Another crack? I guess I'll put a rock and some flowers there, too!"). I'm helping a friend with a Harry Potter cake later today, so I'll get some more practice.
 
For as much fun as I have doing these, it's not something I want to do professionally. For one thing, do you have any idea how much I'd have to charge considering the hours and effort that went into this sucker? (Not to mention the cost of a commercial kitchen, the license and inspection fees, insurance.) Nope, I'm much happier making cakes as gifts for friends and family. The hugs, smiles, and leftover cake scraps are all the payment I ever want.
Nicole Wills, creator of Tikkido