Little Jo’s Cake

A few of you were wondering how my birthday cake project turned out this past weekend. Little Jo Pastry, if you remember, is in a cowgirl phase at the moment. Her favorite character is Jesse from Toy Story 2. Well, I was trying to figure out what sort of cake to make for her party this weekend and finally (thanks to some excellent reader input) settled on a hat cake. Specifically one modeled on Jesse the cowgirl’s flat-top hat.

Given that these sorts of trompe l’oeil cakes aren’t really a specialty of mine, I thought it came out pretty well. The brim was nothing more than a thick piece of fondant that I rolled out, cut and left to dry while I was out of town. I propped up the edges with some magazines to give it the gentle curl of the real hat. The rest is pretty much as you see it: a slightly carved and cut-down two-layer cake covered with red fondant and decorated with a fondant hat band and laces. Looking at the picture now I can see I missed the thin edging around the very outside of the brim. Oh well, we daddies try hard but we’re not perfect. She loved it just the same.

11 thoughts on “Little Jo’s Cake”

  1. Cute! So, best advice on coloring red fondant? I’ve done it once, and it took a ton of food color and a lot of time. Got any tricks?

    1. This is very red fondant, so it needed a lot of pigment. My suggestion for something like this is not to use the regular grocery store food colors, but rather gel colors from a professional baking or candy supply shop. I used AmeriColor’s “super red” which delivers a huge amount of color per drop. I still used about three quarters of an ounce, but that was for about four pounds of fondant (I used maybe three pounds to make the cake).

  2. You did a great job with Little Joe Pastry’s cake… all it takes is love and know-how and you’ve got both!

    1. The love isn’t in doubt — but don’t make any assumptions about the ability. These kinds of projects really intimidate me. I was as surprised as anyone that it turned out as well as it did! 😉 Thanks for the very kind comment. – Joe

  3. Nicely done Joe, I remember back when you were doing petit fours as a birthday cake:)

    Haven’t we all grown in the last 5 years.

    Take care


    1. So true. The cakes get bigger as the girls get bigger. Thank the Lord I don’t have to deliver another daughter cake for another year or so. Who knows what they’ll want then: a Justin Bieber cake?

    1. She was quite surprised. She had no idea that a cake could look that much like a hat. But she and her younger sister all both rather picky about their baked goods. They don’t like buttercream, so underneath the fondant was simply yellow cake with a raspberry jam coating and filling.

  4. I was planning on making this cake for my daughter’s 3 year birthday, and I hadn’t found one like it until now. Thanks for the visual help to go along with the idea in my head.
    Looks fantastic!

    1. Thanks, Cristy! My daughter absolutely loved it. In fact nothing I’ve done for her since has measured up. I may have set the bar a little too high!

      Let me know how it goes!

      – Joe

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