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Easter bunny molded cake morphs to Easter Doggie

Easter bunny molded cake morphs to Easter Doggie
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  • Easter bunny molded cake morphs to Easter Doggie

    Post #1 - April 12th, 2009, 5:14 pm
    Post #1 - April 12th, 2009, 5:14 pm Post #1 - April 12th, 2009, 5:14 pm
    Hi,

    I am a big believer in eating your mistakes. You learn more than by dumping your project into the garbage to begin again. In my effort to make an Easter Lamb, I had to change direction twice with the resulting cake looking like a family member unrelated by DNA.

    Could not find the Easter Lamb mold to save my life. I have a vague memory of giving it away, though it is just as likely stored in an unexpected location. I did find a Wilton Easter Bunny mold that must have been a rummage sale prize. I read through the Joy of Cooking's advice on molded cakes, then dug up Wilton's instructions for a bunny mold similar to mine. I learned quite a bit from reading both with a nod to Joy of Cooking for an idea that saved this effort from being a disaster.

    If I followed tradition, this bunny would have been made with a white cake batter. Inspiration came in two forms: a 'gift' of dead mouse at my front door and a discussion whether to order Red Velvet cake at Depot Diner. I happen not to like Depot Diner's Red Velvet cake, though I like my favored recipe. I thought it would be more dramatic and authentic for a cutting of the Easter bunny being red rather than white. I opted to make Red Velvet cake using Nancy McDermott's recipe from Southern Cakes.

    The Wilton instructions suggested using shortening to brush the interior of the mold, then cover with flour. If there were any shiny spots, brush with more shortening and dust with flour. This was an excellent method to make sure every surface of the mold was greased. When I bake round cakes, I always have parchment on the bottom as insurance against sticking. A mold you have only one chance to get it right.

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    I filled the bottom with cake batter, then tied the mold together. Tying was the brilliant suggestion by Joy of Cooking. Wilton made no mention to do this, but I credit tying with saving this project.

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    When I looked into the oven after 15-20 minutes, I saw cake batter had oozed between the seams. While most people would have pulled the cake right there, I sensed I should leave things well enough alone.

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    The Wilton instructions suggested baking the cake for 30-40 minutes or until the cake tests done. Joy of Cooking flat out said bake for an hour. I tested the cake after 45 minutes using a long bamboo skewer through the only air vent on the bunny's hind leg. It came out clean. I took it out, let it rest ten minutes, then began removing the back panel.

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    I was relieved to see it unmolded perfectly. I put the back panel on again to flip it over and remove the front panel. The bunny's nose stuck to the mold revealing not quite cooked cake batter in the thickest location of the mold. I realized a more suitable air vent location would have been at the head. If the thickest panel is cooked, then so would everything else. I reheated the oven and replaced the cake nose-up in the oven to bake another 15 minutes. The over run cake on the jelly roll pan was tasted and found acceptable. The over run turned into blessing in disguise as the foundation for the bunny's facial reconstruction. Next time I will bake the cake for a full hour just as the Joy of Cooking suggested.

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    A little cream cheese frosting, three strategically placed toothpicks and a thin coating of icing hid the scars.

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    Some dried cherries for eyes and nose, the face resting on a toothpick container dolled up with tin foil. An Easter Egg there to remind us of the occasion. The Easter Bunny had an eerie similarity to ...

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    My sister's dogs Teddie and Max.

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    Happy Easter!

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #2 - April 12th, 2009, 5:33 pm
    Post #2 - April 12th, 2009, 5:33 pm Post #2 - April 12th, 2009, 5:33 pm
    Thank you, Cathy! I'm also a fan of serving whether it fails or not - as a matter of fact, Sparky once mentioned "Mom, you've only ever ruined dinner once!" We've had only one night this year where my experiment failed so badly that the disposall had dinner and we had cheese sandwiches - he's used to us glumly eating all the failed-but-still-edible ones that he doesn't consider them failures the way I do. :D
  • Post #3 - April 12th, 2009, 6:56 pm
    Post #3 - April 12th, 2009, 6:56 pm Post #3 - April 12th, 2009, 6:56 pm
    That's hilarious! Thanks for sharing this. Is this a new family tradition? The easter doggie can start delivering baskets of eggs.
  • Post #4 - April 12th, 2009, 7:47 pm
    Post #4 - April 12th, 2009, 7:47 pm Post #4 - April 12th, 2009, 7:47 pm
    We had a saying in our house when we were growing up:

    "It's OK this time, but don't do it again"

    And the cake must be the Easter Beagle who has delivered Easter Eggs ever since this happened:

    Image
  • Post #5 - April 12th, 2009, 8:14 pm
    Post #5 - April 12th, 2009, 8:14 pm Post #5 - April 12th, 2009, 8:14 pm
    Your Easter doggy cake reminds me of one I made a couple of years ago. I was asked to make Easter dessert for our family dinner and opted to use the lamb mold my mom got when I was a kid. I'm not the religious sort and am a bit of a smart alleck and decided I would have some fun with it. So, I made a blood red velvet cake and covered it with chocolate colored black frosting to make a 'black sheep of the family cake.' The head was perched precariously and held together with toothpicks. While we were eating it fell off beheading the cake. I thought it was hysterical; the others not so much. Regardless it was very tasty!
  • Post #6 - April 13th, 2009, 8:41 am
    Post #6 - April 13th, 2009, 8:41 am Post #6 - April 13th, 2009, 8:41 am
    I could not find the lamb mold at all this year. I think I stashed it in the garage. I ended up making a carrot cake instead.

    My advice regarding these molded cakes. Use Baker's JOy liberally to spray the mold. Various websites have recommended this when using the fancy Wilton and Nordic Ware type molds. I've had trouble with sticking in those molds. In the future when replacing molds, opt for a non stick surface.

    Use a pound cake like dough. Most regular cake recipes are too fragile to stand up as a molded cake. Frankly, I just planned to use the Dromedary mix as I was in a hurry.

    Cool cakes around fifteen minutes or so before unmolding.

    You certainly did make lemonade from lemons!! It probably tasted good.
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare
  • Post #7 - April 13th, 2009, 9:25 am
    Post #7 - April 13th, 2009, 9:25 am Post #7 - April 13th, 2009, 9:25 am
    Hi,

    I read about the various releasing agents like Baker's Joy. I just was not in the mood to visit more stores. Confectioner's sugar moves very slowly around here. I ended up pulverizing granulated sugar in a coffee grinder to a powder. Cake did taste good, just had a slice for breakfast. We still have not yet eaten the face.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #8 - April 13th, 2009, 11:07 am
    Post #8 - April 13th, 2009, 11:07 am Post #8 - April 13th, 2009, 11:07 am
    Too FUNNY! :D I get the idea of trying to mold a cake, but I was wondering if anyone just baked the two halves and stuck them together? I for one appreciated the creative effort and results. Not all bunnies look alike! As my good father used to say, if it tastes good, I don’t care what it looks like. As my son says, you don’t need to try that again! It’s a 50/50 world. I also loved the choice of the red velvet cake. Outstanding!
  • Post #9 - April 13th, 2009, 12:31 pm
    Post #9 - April 13th, 2009, 12:31 pm Post #9 - April 13th, 2009, 12:31 pm
    Cathy - so adorable - cake and real live dogs. And you're so right - saving the face for last - face is always the best part.
  • Post #10 - April 13th, 2009, 1:11 pm
    Post #10 - April 13th, 2009, 1:11 pm Post #10 - April 13th, 2009, 1:11 pm
    Should've used duct tape before baking :)
  • Post #11 - April 13th, 2009, 2:06 pm
    Post #11 - April 13th, 2009, 2:06 pm Post #11 - April 13th, 2009, 2:06 pm
    love it love it love it
  • Post #12 - April 13th, 2009, 2:15 pm
    Post #12 - April 13th, 2009, 2:15 pm Post #12 - April 13th, 2009, 2:15 pm
    jlo wrote:love it love it love it

    Of course, it does look just like your dogs.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #13 - April 13th, 2009, 3:30 pm
    Post #13 - April 13th, 2009, 3:30 pm Post #13 - April 13th, 2009, 3:30 pm
    I inherited my Grandmother's lamb cake mold this year-my grandmother passed away in August at almost 101. I made a trial run cake earlier last week, and it came out fine. It was more of a pound cake and it held together. The cake I made for Easter was the Vanilla Bean Coconut Cupcake recipe from last month's Bon Appetit. It was a great tasting cake but....it was a bit of a disaster. It held together until I put it in the refrigerator and then the head fell off. I used bamboo skewers to resecure it. Next year, back to the pound cake :D
    I think mine looks a bit like a doggie too!
    Cathy2, I love the idea of a red velvet cake-very funny.

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  • Post #14 - April 13th, 2009, 7:54 pm
    Post #14 - April 13th, 2009, 7:54 pm Post #14 - April 13th, 2009, 7:54 pm
    I have noticed especially for the lamb cakes that are completely covered with coconut, especially the head, they tend to look like poodles not lambs. Important to keep the face just plain with frosting for a true lamb look.
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare
  • Post #15 - April 14th, 2009, 4:31 pm
    Post #15 - April 14th, 2009, 4:31 pm Post #15 - April 14th, 2009, 4:31 pm
    My aunt brought over a bakery bought lamb cake on Easter, and my three year old kept referring to it as the "poodle" cake.

    So even the pros have a hard time making these things look like the intended animal.
    Today I caught that fish again, that lovely silver prince of fishes,
    And once again he offered me, if I would only set him free—
    Any one of a number of wonderful wishes... He was delicious! - Shel Silverstein
  • Post #16 - April 14th, 2009, 10:45 pm
    Post #16 - April 14th, 2009, 10:45 pm Post #16 - April 14th, 2009, 10:45 pm
    Hi,

    A friend bought her lamb cake from a grocery store. It was so dry, she found herself sawing slices of cake. One guest used so much effort trying to stick a fork in it, the cake flew off the table. After that, it was just one lamb cake joke after another.

    One guest suggested she consider making her own lamb cake using Elvis Presley's favorite pound cake recipe. Can't wait for next year's report.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #17 - April 14th, 2009, 11:27 pm
    Post #17 - April 14th, 2009, 11:27 pm Post #17 - April 14th, 2009, 11:27 pm
    Well, I'm not going to post any shot of my nephew's beheading our two lamb cakes this year....
    (nor the video...) Too much grief last year....


    FWIW, the cakes my mother makes are very much in the poundcake tradition, they are quite dense.
    The only way the heads come off is with a swift slice from a sabre!
  • Post #18 - April 15th, 2009, 1:08 am
    Post #18 - April 15th, 2009, 1:08 am Post #18 - April 15th, 2009, 1:08 am
    Chiming in late here, Cathy2 but thanks for the laugh!
  • Post #19 - April 15th, 2009, 4:37 am
    Post #19 - April 15th, 2009, 4:37 am Post #19 - April 15th, 2009, 4:37 am
    Thats one good looking pound cake recipe there. I think I'd rather make the lamb cakes than buy them just because they might be too dry by Easter.
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare
  • Post #20 - April 15th, 2009, 5:49 pm
    Post #20 - April 15th, 2009, 5:49 pm Post #20 - April 15th, 2009, 5:49 pm
    I thank you for the much needed laugh today!
  • Post #21 - May 3rd, 2010, 10:44 pm
    Post #21 - May 3rd, 2010, 10:44 pm Post #21 - May 3rd, 2010, 10:44 pm
    Hi,

    Easter is already a month past. It's time to finally update on Easter lamb cake 2010.

    About a month before Easter, a friend inquired if I wanted to replicate Easter Doggie for an article. I was fine with this idea, though not too crazy to have a camera in my kitchen. When it was proposed to go to Wilton's test kitchen instead, I was quite eager to do it. Instead of replicating my Easter Doggie, it turned into a lesson on how to properly make a molded cake.

    Last year, I diverted from the recommended pound cake to red velvet. According to Wilton's test kitchen, this softer cake is not dense enough for this purpose. I also brought along the bottle of red food dye used, which they did not approve of either. My dye was intended to spray paint color onto a cake and not for food dye. (It is the same viscosity as the McCormick food dyes I have.)

    While they proposed any pound cake recipe would work. They advised a reliable solution was to use a cake mix amended to have the density of a pound cake. They mixed a Duncan Hines vanilla cake with one 3.4 ounce box instant vanilla pudding, 4 eggs, 1 cup water and 1/3 cup vegetable oil. While it was mixing, I sprayed a lamb mold thoroughly with vegetable oil. The mold is filled to the very edge. The top is fitted on and tied on at two places. The cake bakes on a rack set a mid level for 50-60 minutes at 350 degrees F. At 50 minutes, test for doneness.

    We discussed how I unmolded last year's cake, which quickly was identifed as another area where patience could improve results. When the finished cake was removed from the oven, it sat vent up (and face down) to cool for five minutes. After five minutes, cut the strings and lift the lid for the steam to escape. After five minutes, put lid back on and flip the lamb on its back and remove the lid for steam to escape. After five minutes, put the lid back on. Allow the cake to thoroughly cool for four hours before unmolding completely.

    By contrast, I had the lamb cake unmolded in less than ten minutes last year. Maybe just maybe my cake would have survived better last year had I known and followed this cool down method.

    The cake I decorated at Wilton I brought home. They taped the cake's bottom to the cake carton. A nice trick to get the cake home without sliding around and smashing the frosting.

    The cake made at Wilton was eaten for dessert on Saint Patrick's Day. I made another one for Easter, which naturally diverted a wee bit from their instructions. I did make red velvet cake, though I used a Duncan Hines mix amended with regular chocolate pudding and the other amendments to the recipe they suggested. It baked up perfectly. Of course, I did not divert from their cooling methods, because why fool with that?

    Instead of using Wilton buttercream, I made a cream cheese frosting. It piped out beautifully and tasted wonderful with the red velvet cake. The face of the lamb, they showed me how to apply to cover. Wait for the frosting to skin over slightly, then take your finger and lightly press it smoothly into place.

    When I frost and decorate cakes, I can do the large areas. I get into trouble with the fine details. At Wilton, I had the test kitchen director apply the lamb's face. At home, I avoided putting a face on the lamb until the last minute. My niece said it needed something. I should have just put a raisin there, but no I had to try to pipe in some eyes. I used red frosting. My niece declared the lamb looked evil. Well, I put a raisin over the red dot. Now the lamb looked like it had blood shot eyes from a night of heavy drinking. I did make a third lamb cake for a Chicago Foodways Roundtable meeting. I left the face blank. Why screw it up at the very last moment?

    Lamb cake made at Wilton under adult supervision:
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    Lamb cake (with red velvet cake underneath) made for Easter:
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    Lamb cake made for Culinary Historians:
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    I'm glad my goofy experience last year allowed me this opportunity to really learn how to use a molded cake.

    While the family dogs have been honored. I'm waiting for the horse population or worse, my cat, to expect a tribute in cake. The cat is the scary one to cross, because she runs the whole kingdom.

    Image

    This cake thing, it's just between you and me. Ok?

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #22 - May 3rd, 2010, 10:50 pm
    Post #22 - May 3rd, 2010, 10:50 pm Post #22 - May 3rd, 2010, 10:50 pm
    Thanks, Cathy. That was a great post! It made me chuckle and smile. The cakes turned out very nicely.
  • Post #23 - May 7th, 2010, 1:25 pm
    Post #23 - May 7th, 2010, 1:25 pm Post #23 - May 7th, 2010, 1:25 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:About a month before Easter, a friend inquired if I wanted to replicate Easter Doggie for an article.


    Online here: http://www.suntimes.com/lifestyles/2130 ... 10.article
  • Post #24 - May 4th, 2011, 6:32 pm
    Post #24 - May 4th, 2011, 6:32 pm Post #24 - May 4th, 2011, 6:32 pm
    Thank you for all of your advice! My little lamb (nicknamed Clarisse) turned out lovely was a great success with my family. My nephews particularly enjoyed my dramatic, table-side decapitation.

    ~Stephanie
  • Post #25 - May 4th, 2011, 9:24 pm
    Post #25 - May 4th, 2011, 9:24 pm Post #25 - May 4th, 2011, 9:24 pm
    fifille wrote:Thank you for all of your advice! My little lamb (nicknamed Clarisse) turned out lovely was a great success with my family. My nephews particularly enjoyed my dramatic, table-side decapitation.

    ~Stephanie


    I'm not posting the video this year.... but here's one of the two lamb cakes that faced the blade on Easter Sunday
    Image
  • Post #26 - April 7th, 2012, 8:59 am
    Post #26 - April 7th, 2012, 8:59 am Post #26 - April 7th, 2012, 8:59 am
    Lamb Cake 2012 just left the oven.
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #27 - April 7th, 2012, 11:37 am
    Post #27 - April 7th, 2012, 11:37 am Post #27 - April 7th, 2012, 11:37 am
    Cathy, Post pictures of it !!!! Would love to see it. I am making a sunflower cake instead of a lamb. Never did locate the lamb tin in all the stuff in my house. This is a wilton sunflower cake pan that is very pretty. I am making a solo almond pound cake recipe to put in it. I think I will glaze it instead of putting heavy frosting on it. I will make a glaze with almond extract which I love. If they made a perfume that smelled like almond extract I would be the first to buy it!!! I am thinking of decorating the center with jelly beans. I will have to see.
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare
  • Post #28 - August 23rd, 2012, 7:03 am
    Post #28 - August 23rd, 2012, 7:03 am Post #28 - August 23rd, 2012, 7:03 am
    Hi,

    I follow this website on German recipes, because it offers more Germanic recipes than all my relatives combined. I happened upon their recipe for Easter Lamb Cake.

    Until now, I never knew there might be a German connection to Lamb Cake. I'm still not sure there is, though it has given me a new direction to look for the origins of this dessert.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #29 - August 23rd, 2012, 11:44 am
    Post #29 - August 23rd, 2012, 11:44 am Post #29 - August 23rd, 2012, 11:44 am
    Cathy I think there is a connection. Its not only German but also eastern European, Poles, Czechs too make lamb mold cakes. I did some research and found that the most valuable mold now considered an antique is by Griswold, seemingly a German name. These are made of cast iron and fetch high prices on ebay and etsy.

    I also found a site that publishes recipes some now out of print for the original recipes for the molds. My molds were of aluminum and of more recent vintage.
    I have both the lamb and rabbit but I do not think I've ever made the rabbit one. The lamb is more traditional.
    When I went to Vesecky's bakery in Berwyn around easter, they had quite a few lamb cakes. Some were white frosted with coconut and were very pretty but there are plenty of coconut haters out there so some were iced in white icing and other were "naked" in chocolate frosting. They did look peculiar but will please some.

    Here are some recipes for anyone else interested.

    http://www.tinyisland.com/recipes/LambOrRabbitCake.txt

    Pictures of Griswold lamb molds

    http://www.etsy.com/listing/95117869/vi ... -lamb-cake

    http://www.artfire.com/ext/shop/gallery ... club/25745
    Toria

    "I like this place and willingly could waste my time in it" - As You Like It,
    W. Shakespeare
  • Post #30 - August 23rd, 2012, 12:50 pm
    Post #30 - August 23rd, 2012, 12:50 pm Post #30 - August 23rd, 2012, 12:50 pm
    Hi,

    I will be in South Dakota next week, where the state dessert is kuchen. I will inquire there about Easter desserts to see if lamb cakes dominate there.

    Lamb cake is never seen everywhere. I have met enough people from other regions of the United States who never heard of Easter lamb cake.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast

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