Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Mich Turner's Penguin Chef Cake

When you want to celebrate Christmas and have some fun too, this is the cake for you. I just love the proud penguin chef standing beside his beautiful cake. I decided to make these cakes for my children's teachers, an amusing way to enjoy a Christmas pudding!

You'll have plenty of help making this cake, but if you need a little more, I have added a link below to You Tube of Mich making this cake. Enjoy!!

Recipe complements of Mich Turner's Cake Masterclass

15cm Quantity of chocolate truffle torte cooked in a 450ml pudding basin, 14cm in diameter (I used my Traditional Christmas Pudding)
1 Quantity dark chocolate plastique (I omitted this stage)
23cm Round base board
Red sugar paste for the base board
Edible varnish or sugar glue
Red edible glitter
80cm Red ribbon, 15mm wide
100g White sugar paste
Icing sugar, for dusting
75g Green sugar paste
50g Red sugar paste ( I used Sugarflair Christmas Red paste)
Royal icing, for fixing
Cutter white snowflakes, optional  (I bought my cutters in J&B Hope, Cavan for €14.50)
For the penguin:
20g Light brown petal paste
80g White petal paste
80g White sugar paste
 Food colourings in black and orange
 Stick of spaghetti, broken to give a 6cm piece and a 3cm piece

Cover the cake with one coat of dark chocolate plastique. Line the base board with red sugar paste topped with glitter (reserving some for the holly berries). Surround the base board with the red ribbon, fixed with glue. Leave the cake and base board to dry overnight.

Knead the white sugar paste until smooth and pliable and roll out on a worktop dusted with icing sugar to approximately a 20cm (8in) circle, 3mm (1/8in) thick. Cut a scalloped edge all the way around. Brush the top of the cake with cooled boiled water and place the white sugar paste into position over the top of the cake. Knead the green sugar paste until smooth and pliable and roll out to a thickness of 3mm (1/8in). Cut out 3 holly leaves, using the holly-leaf cutter.

Mark the indentations on the leaves with a marking tool or use a sharp knife gently. Brush the underside of the leaves with sugar glue, then fix into position on the top of the pudding
Roll 6 pea-sized balls of red sugar paste and place in a small dish of the reserved red glitter to cover. Use royal icing to fix these into position on the top of the holly leaves.

To make the penguin, first shape the wooden spoon from the light brown petal paste, then leave it to set hard. Next, knead the white petal and white sugar pastes together thoroughly, then divide into 3 portions, weighing 90g, 40g and 30g. Colour the largest portion black and the smallest portion orange, and leave the middle one white. Now mould the different- coloured pastes into the body parts, as shown: head, body, flippers and eyes in black; beak and feet in orange; hat, eyes and tummy (using the round cutter) in white.

Place the orange feet together and brush the back of them with a little sugar glue. Press the body down onto the feet to secure. Brush the body with sugar glue and fix the white tummy into position. Insert the 6cm length of spaghetti into the body. Fix the penguin's flippers into position from the back of the body, making sure that the flippers are folded gently outwards from the body. Fix the head into position on top of the spaghetti. Fix the eyes and beak into position with sugar glue. Insert a 3cm length of spaghetti into the top of the penguin's head and fix the chef's hat into position with sugar glue. Finish by inserting the wooden spoon into the penguin's body so it sits by his flipper, as shown. Fix the cake into position offset on the base board with royal icing, and fix the penguin in position at the front. Add some white snowflakes, if using.

I made two of these cake for each of my children's teachers, The cake above has dyed caster sugar for the cake board and the top of the holly berries. This is very simple to do, in a small bowl add red food colouring and mix, add more colour as required. Leave to dry, it's brilliant for all sort of decorating ideas and it keeps for ages.

These berries were decorated with shop bought sugar crystals, very pretty too. These will be delivered in cake boxes wrapped in festive ribbons.

Related Reading:
You Tube: Mich Turner making this very cake
LVCC: Penguin Chef Cake
You Tube: Mich Turner covering a cake board tutorial

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