While the oven was preheating, I prepared the pan and set it aside to mix a double batch of my favorite chocolate cake recipe. The cake pan holds about one and a half batches of traditional cake batter.
After the bottom half of the pan has been filled, the top half attaches and then a few pieces of kitchen twine are used to keep the halves together as the cake rises. I poured the remaining cake batter into an 8-inch round pan to be used as the cake’s base. Then it was off to the oven for the recipe’s recommended baking time.
I continued on until the cake was covered with feathers. Then I mixed a small amount of orange for the beak per my daughter’s request. Using a large white chocolate disk and light blue frosting, I prepared two eyes to be attached to the head. I tried in vain to replicate Amelia’s rose comb and wattles, but each time it seemed to make the cake look more like a duck than it did without them. In the end, I decided that as far as a child’s birthday cake is concerned, aesthetics were more important than physiology. After affixing a piece of 1.5-inch-wide ribbon to the outside edge of the bottom base layer, it was time for the cake to sit patiently in the refrigerator until party time arrived.
When it was finally time to affix the candles and sing “Happy Birthday” to our birthday girl, I was happy with the results. So was she. Her smile told me that all of my hard work was worth it. She didn’t care that it slightly resembled a duck or that Amelia’s beautiful rose comb had been left out. She was only concerned with the excitement of her big day and the knowledge that I loved her enough to try and make exactly what she wanted. That was reward enough for me.
Now you know all about my journey to create an original cake in the likeness of Amelia, one of our Golden Laced Wyandottes. If you are interested in learning about all of the chicken-themed handmade gifts that I crafted to be given to the birthday girl, stay tuned. I’ll be writing about them in my next post.