I was a bit late in coming up with a plan for my cupcake workshop at the Norwich Food and Drink Festival. It needed to be bike related to link to the Tour of Britain.
Whenever I’m asked to make a cake or cupcakes with a theme, my first step is to search for it on Google images or Pinterest. Not to copy the designs, quite the opposite in fact, I would rather do something more original so I aim to do something that hasn’t really been done before. It is not easy to be completely original as many clients desire a particular item on their cake but wherever possible I like to create something different.
My search for “bike cupcakes” (and various other key word searches) threw up lots of mini bikes on top of cupcakes, most were non edible and would be removed before eating.
Such as these cool acrylic toppers. They look awesome but were not something I could teach to children; “Here you go, stick this into a cupcake, done!”
Some had meticulously piped little bikes out of royal icing or chocolate but again, not easy to teach to a 5 year old and would take too long to set, so not workshop suitable.
I also found this cute little design but again not suitable for a drop in workshop.
So after a fruitless internet search I started to think a little more abstractly and thought about the cogs and gears on a bike. I didn’t have access to any cogs but I do have a 9 year old boy with boxes of Lego and Knex. I had a rummage through the Knex box and found a few useful cog type objects, some Lego wheels with rubber tyres and the final joyous discovery was two tiny BMX bike wheels.
All items were sterilised to make them food safe and I set about using them to emboss fondant to create toppers for the cupcakes.
It was such a simple technique but looked really impressive and I had so many comments about them during the weekend The best bit about the technique was despite looking really intricate with the metallic textures, anyone, of any ability could access it and create their own effective designs. Throughout the event I taught children from age 3 to a group of students around 19 years of age and they all produced iced cupcakes with beautiful fondant toppers.
I’ve put together a simple little tutorial to show how easy it is to create these stunning toppers.
You will need:
White fondant, a non stick board, non stick rolling pin, paint brush, metallic edible dusts, circle cutters, edible glitter, selection of toy wheels and cogs.
- Roll out the fondant to a thickness of about 3mm
- Press the cogs and wheels into the fondant to create a range of interesting textures and patterns.
- You can use the tyres to give tracks across your fondant.
- Use a selection of metallic dusts to brush onto your textured fondant.
- I blended the three metallic colours so they merged into one another.
- Use different sized circle cutters to select the most interesting areas.
- Peel away the excess fondant leaving the detailed metallic discs.
- Use the discs to decorate some freshly iced cupcakes.