Creating a Colorado Christmas cake has been a pet project of mine for a while now, since last Christmas. Sydney and I designed the cake together, she constructed the filigree templates and the trees. It was an incredible experience working with Sydney for our first project, since she arrived home. I will admit didn’t sleep much, however it was worth it. Watching the cake come to life as I added each tree, as Sydney directed where each should be placed, her eyes began to glisten. She was able to stand a few feet and see the entire cake. If you have someone who can stand back it is very helpful, I was very close to the cake and it was hard (impossible) to see it as a whole cake.
Colorado Christmas Cake:
- 1-recipe Madeira cake
- 1- recipe royal icing
- Parchment paper cornets, cones
- 1 disposable plastic piping bag (without a tip cut to #3 tip size), or a sandwich bag with the bottom cornrer cut to # 3 tip size
- PME or Bekenal 1.5 tip, or you may use the just the cone with a small whole
- #0 artist brush
- Scriber tool
- Kemper mini spatula
- PME holder or damp rag
- PME holly leaf plunger and cutter
- Kit Box snowflake cutter
- Dampened paper towel
- Filigree tree template
- Masking tape
- Parchment or tracing paper
- Icing sugar (to snow the cake)
- Eye dropper, for adding water to Royal icing
Bobbie’s Madeira Cake:
- 150 gram cake flour/ 1 1/2-cups cake flour, sifted (Not self rising)
- 180 grams/1 1/2-cups all-purpose flour
- 400 grams/ 2-cups sugar
- 9 grams/2-teaspoon baking powder
- 1-teaspoon salt
- 200 grams/4 eggs, at room temperature
- 226 grams/2 sticks, softened butter
- 244 grams/1-cup milk, at room temperature
- 122 grams/1-cup buttermilk, room temperature
- Vanilla bean, scraped for seeds
- 1-1/2teaspoon almond extract, or vanilla
- Standing mixer or hand mixer
- rubber spatula
- 1-8×3 hexagon cake pan
- parchment paper cake liner, hexagon shape (I cut my own)
- Standing mixer or hand
- Rubber spatula
You can find most of the materials and template here.
Preheat oven to 160º C/325º F.
Prepare your mise en place and spray your hexagon cake pan with baking spay, flour and line the bottom with a hexagon parchment cake liner.
In a medium bowl whisk eggs, 122 grams/ 1/2 -cup of buttermilk and extract.
Use the 2-stage method.
In the bowl of a standing mixer, with the paddle attachment, sift all the dry ingredients (including sugars) and mix on low speed just to blend. Add the butter and plain 244 grams/1 –cup of milk. Continue to mix on low speed till the dry ingredients are moistened, raise the speed to medium and beat for about 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides and gradually add the egg-milk mixture in thirds, beating for 20 seconds after each addition. Scrape down the sides.
Pour the cake batter into your prepared hexagon cake pan, gently rap the pan against your work surface (to release air bubbles), smooth the top with an off-set spatula.
Bake your Madeira cake for 65- 75 minutes or until the cake is golden brown, springs back when pressed lightly in center, or an inserted cake tester comes out clean.
Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes, invert on a cooling rack, invert again (so the cake is right side up). Allow the cake to cool completely.
Once the cake is cooled wrap in parchment paper cover with plastic wrap and place in the freeze for 2 hours.
Remove from the freezer, cut the top off the cake to level it. Brush with apricot jam and cover with marzipan. Let the marzipan dry for 2 days and cover with fondant (allow the fondant to dry for 1 day).
Now it is time to decorate!
We chose to use a square 10 inch cake board covered in fondant and wrapped a blue ribbon around the edge.
Dust your cake with a blue shimmer, and pipe little round royal icing balls in groups of three.
Add your holly leaves and snowflakes with a drop of royal icing.
Sift icing sugar over the cake to look like snow.
After your filigree tree is dry place a small round flower paste (gumpaste) circle in the centre of you hexagon cake and pipe a thin line of royal icing (off peak consistency ) following the bottom of the tree and GINGERLY attach. Allow to dry for several hours.
Add the side trees to each side of the cake, starting with one side tree in the middle, and adding two side trees to the middle tree. If you need more trees add one at a time to each side.
If you have any questions please leave me a message.