Monday, 15 September 2014

Australian Football League Cake.

Last week, my boyfriend told me about a competition he was entering to win tickets to the AFL Grand Final. We both love football, so I was super excited for him. The competition involved displaying the logo of the company 'Momentum Energy' in a creative way. He asked me if I had any ideas, and me being me, suggested that we make a football shaped cake. Now I haven't had much experience with creating cakes like that, so initially I was a bit hesitant. However, we decided to go for it, after all, what could we lose by trying? We followed a tutorial to get the shape right which can be found here, however made up the rest as Australian footballs are a bit different to those in America. I have written up the recipe below, so if you ever feel daring enough, you can have a go too! (Sorry about the dodgy pictures-some of them were taken at 11 o'clock at night, so the quality isn't great!)

Australian Football League Cake

Part 1: Baking the cake (This recipe makes two cakes)

Vanilla Cake (You can use chocolate cake or any other variation)

© Melted butter, to grease
© 450g (3 cups) self-raising flour
© 150g (1 cup) plain flour
© 440g (2 cups) caster sugar
© 300g butter, cubed, at room temperature
© 310ml (1 1/4 cups) milk
© 6 eggs, at room temperature
© 3 teaspoons vanilla essence
  1. Preheat the oven to 140°C. Brush two square  cake pans with the melted butter to lightly grease. Line base and sides with non-stick baking paper.
  2. Place the self-raising flour, plain flour, sugar, butter, milk, eggs and vanilla essence in a large mixing bowl. Use an electric beater to beat on low speed for 30 seconds or until just combined. Increase the speed to high and beat for 1-2 minutes or until the mixture is thick and all the butter is incorporated. Spoon the mixture into the prepared pan and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon.
  3. Bake cakes in preheated oven for around an hour or until a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven and set aside for 10 minutes. 
  4. Turn onto a wire rack for 2 hours or until completely cool.

    Buttercream frosting (Whilst this may seem to make a large quantity of frosting, this batch can be used to sandwich the two cakes together, cover the entire cake and make the green grass around the football). 

    © 3 teaspoons vanilla essence
    © 227 g butter, softened
    © 5 cups icing sugar
    © A few dashes of milk
    © Several drops of green food colouring
  1. Cream all ingredients in a mixer for 3 minutes until smooth.
  2. Spread buttercream icing in between the two layers of cake. 
      Part 2: Carving the cake

You will need: 

© An AFL Football template (found here)
© Good, sharp knives (We used a paring knife and a large kitchen knife) 
© Wooden skewers 
  1. Place the template on top of the cake.
  2. Place skewers through the top to ensure that the template stays in place. 
  3. Using the large knife, cut around the template, leaving a small space around the edge. This is just a backup in case you cut too much off! 
  4. Using the paring knife, shape the cake to the size you are aiming for. It helps to follow the tutorial I provided above.

TPB TIP: It is always best to trim off small bits at a time. You can always take cake off, but you cannot get it back! 

Part 3: Decorating the cake

You will need: 
© The carved cake (no brainer)
© The frosting you prepared earlier
© 1 KG of pre-made fondant
© Rolling pin
© A large, wooden board, big enough for the cake to sit on covered in foil. 
© Wilton colour mist or any other spray on colouring in the colours you require (red is probably important!) 
  1. Place cake on foil board. 
  2. Cover your carved cake in buttercream frosting. Make sure you make it as smooth as possible. 
  3. Roll out the fondant to around 5mm thick. Lay on top of cake and smooth out using your hands. Be gentle, you don't want the fondant to crack! Also, save a little bit of fondant for the football laces. 
  4. Using the colour mist, spray the cake until evenly covered. 
  5. If you are wanting to have writing on the cake like we did, you can make your own stencil and spray that on. Alternatively, you can write on the cake using these gel decorating pens. 
  6. Cut out 6 small rectangles of fondant, which are the football laces. Stick these on top of the cake. 
  7. Pipe the remaining green buttercream around the football using a star tip. If you don't have one of these, it doesn't matter! The grassy effect can be made using anything really!

And there you have it! We had so much fun making it, and it has now given me the confidence to try out other special cakes! And to sweeten the deal, we actually ended up winning the competition, and in one week's time, we are off to Melbourne!! I cannot contain my excitement!! 

Until next time, happy baking.


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