Saturday, January 8, 2011

The Monster (Truck) of all Cakes

Ok, so I have not only gone back to work, this week and have had to get up way too early for my liking but have been working on the cake my 5 year old nephew asked me to make for his birthday party....The monster truck cake! (This has been the fun part of my week) I have been a little to busy to do too much blogging. I must admit to fretting a bit about this cake. At one point I even wondered if I could get it done. Then I got in the zone and things really got rolling! I used my favourite devil's food chocolate recipe as it makes enough that I only have to use one batch (and it is just so darn yummy!).

Making my own marshmallow fondant is so much cheaper and as Trina always insists, it tastes better than the store bought stuff. I did have to buy some store bought fondant as I needed black fondant and I just don't have that much colouring to make black fondant myself so I did need a little help in that department. The marshmallow fondant does need to rest a bit after you make it and before you use it on the cake so make this before you start.

I will not lie to you, making a cake like this takes planning and a lot of work. I made a few diagrams in my note book, I write down ideas and suggestions from others about details and materials...I think about it while I sleep, while I get the idea. I also have to figure out the logistics in regards to my little kitchen space. This includes things like setting up the table along the one wall, putting other items in the basement and out of the way and making sure there is a good supply of food that is easily prepared or microwavable since my stove top becomes a work space!

I baked the cakes in smaller foil pans that I found at the grocery store. I must have stood in that aisle forever playing around with the pans asking my son "does this look like it would make a truck?" I think he said yes just so we could leave the store.
I used some small rectangular pans and the mini loaf pans. There was also enough batter to make 12 cupcakes.

Once they were cooled and wrapped in plastic wrap I was able to play with them a little to see how things would look.

The cakes needed some trimming to flatten and even the cakes out.
Cakes needed to be lined up and fit well with each other so take your time to get them fitting together properly.

Now for some reason, I don't seem to have pictures of the icing process...I was 'in the zone' and didn't want to get icing on my camera.
Before you start, you will want to get a cake board ready that will be the size of your truck and will support the full weight of the cake. I bought a pack of cardboard cake boards at the craft store, folded it in half to give more support and cut it down to the size of the cake. The board was then wrapped in foil. A small bit of icing on the board will help anchor the cake.

Now put a good layer of icing between the layers to glue them together. Icing really is the glue that holds it all together. Once the truck base and the cab are all iced together, put a layer of icing all over the cake. This is a crumb coat that keeps the crumbs on the cake as well as the fondant.

Isaac's colour of choice for his special cake was green so I kneaded some (ok, quite a bit) green colouring gel into the fondant.

Marshmallow fondant rolls out nice and easy (almost like play-dough!). Carefully lay the fondant over the cake making sure to press gently to get it to stick to the icing. This fondant is so forgiving. It stretches a little and tears less than the store bought kind so you can manouever it to get the fondant in the right spot.
A lot of planning also goes into the decorations and details of the cake. A monster truck requires decals, exhaust pipes, a grill, lights.....the whole nine yards. These can be rolled and cut out with a paring knife before hand.

The rest is really just thinking and coming up with ideas for how to make the decorations...some internet research and pictures of monster trucks also helps!!

The shapes of fondant are adhered with a light brush of water!

The cross bars are black fondant rolled around a wooden skewer.

The flood lights are mini marshmallows.

The shapes I cut using the Cricut cake cutter.

Toothpicks are also helpful to attach decorations.

This is the base of the cake...the plastic cups will support the truck and the cupcakes are boulders.

The boulders (cupcakes) will be iced over before being covered in fondant.

When I made my second batch of fondant I added brown colouring gel to the marshmallows.
Let me assure you that brown melted marshmallows do not look pretty!

I covered the base in sections rather than attempting to roll out one giant piece of fondant.

The edges can be pressed together and covered up quite easily.

Move the fondant around to where you want it to sit.

Place the truck carefully on the cups and make sure they are stable.

The wheels are crullers we picked up at Tim Horton's (how Canadian of us).
The donuts were then sprayed with the black Wilton food spray can.

Tooth picks were used to secure the wheels

The pipes were made with black fondant rolled around a skewer for stability

The exhaust pipes, crossbars and writing were added last....Now ready for transport on bumpy winter roads....

Graham cracker crumbs were added after delivery to make more dirt and help cover the seams.

I really like the skull shaped boulder at the front!

This cake was so much fun to make. I really loved the phone call from my nephew after the party thanking me for the cake!

The birthday boy with his chocolate cake grin!

Nooooo!!! Don't cut my cake!!!
Before cutting, make sure to remove the toothpicks
and such so no one eats them.

Marshmallow fondant:

1 lb mini marshmallows
2 lbs icing sugar
1/4 to 1/2 cup shortening
2 tbsp water

Place the shortening on a small plate so you can easily get at it and grease up your counter top.

Dump most of the icing sugar on the greased up counter and make a well in the middle.

Put mini marshmallows into a microwave safe bowl with the water. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring after each one until the marshmallows are completely melted. Add colourings and flavours if you wish to at this time, otherwise you can knead these in after.

Pour the melted marshmallow into the well and start folding the sugar in a little at a time. Remember to grease up your hands first with some shortening! Keep kneading and adding icing sugar until the fondant is no longer sticky. Wrap the fondant in plastic wrap and let it rest. Some people say to let it rest overnight but I have used it after only a 1/2 hour rest.

And now Episode 2 of Little Kitchen On The Prairie - Making Fondant:


  1. Amazing! So Ace of Cakes, too!!

    And yes, MMF tastes so much better than store bought. And totally understand the purchase of black fondant, would have done the same.

  2. Loved the video! I want to make it just for fun!

  3. I am going to the store to make this cake! wish me luck! never made or used fondant before! thanks for the inspiration!


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