Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Birthday Cake a la Oscar! No, not that Oscar.

The Mike had a birthday this month. He's officially caught up to me (again)--for a few months anyway.   I asked him a earlier this month what kind of cake he wanted and he said "swirl".  Me (thinking) "how do I make a swirl cake?" Thanks internet for teaching me how!   The thing The Mike didn't know was that I had found some old Wilton cake pans at the consignment shop last November.  I had Cookie Monster, Big Bird, Oscar the Grouch, and then there was a Cabbage Patch one.  I had made a round Cookie Monster cake last year for his birthday, so that one was out. I casually asked my husband, "Which Sesame Street character is your favorite next to Cookie Monster?".  The Mike took a minute to think, and wonder why his wife is asking him this question out of the blue, to say "Oscar".  Okay.  Oscar it is!  

Fast forward to February and I cheated with using a Betty Crocker chocolate and Betty Crocker yellow cake mix. I  would have made one cake from scratch, but two cake mixes--not happening, and on a rushed day.  I had four hours to bake, cool, and ice the cake before an afternoon appointment.   To the yellow cake mix, I added a package of J-e-l-l-o French Vanilla pudding (I think that was the flavor), just to add flavor to the yellow cake mix, because we all know it doesn't have any flavor.  Don't add any extra liquid to the yellow cake mix/pudding bowl.
FB helped me with friends saying to heavily butter/grease the pan and then suggested using cocoa powder instead of white flour in the pan.  Great tip!
Google helped with the swirl part. To make a swirl, mix up both cake mixes. Then make a grid system of alternating mixes every other dollop/plop into the pan.    
In hindsight, I could have used more vanilla plops, but it was moving together quickly in the pan. I was told only one cake mix was needed for the cake pan. Knowing this, I held back some of the mix and made six jumbo cupcakes to bake and freeze. 

 Then use a wide cake frosting spatula or something wider than a regular knife to swirl the cake together.
 I was afraid of mixing too much, but once it was cut into, I realized I could have swirled more.  
 Go ahead, laugh. I sure did.  It looks like an alien opening his mouth to scream.  

I followed the pan how to decorate. I could not believe how much frosting is needed on this!  The grass piping tip works well for his fur/hair.  I originally tried using some KToos GF oreo type cookies or the eyes, and that was just TOO MUCH, so I went with the Wilton eye decorations instead.    
Was The Mike surprised?  Yes. He had forgotten naming Oscar as his second favorite Sesame St character though, so he was a bit perplexed as to why he had an Oscar cake.  :-) 

We should have pulled some of Oscar out of the freezer to have on Oscar night! It's in there for when we have a cake craving.  

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