Shirlee Goodness Cakery

Making the world a sweeter place one cake at a time




I’ve been thinking that I need to post about some of my cake disasters or near-disasters.  It’s quite intimidating to read all the wonderful posts about other people’s baking and how delicious and wonderful everything turns out. I want to be one of the perfect and successful celebrities of the baking world!  But those disasters and near-disasters are how I learn the tips and tricks.  We all have them, admit it!.  We need to have a good laugh and then go on and fix them.  I guess I just haven’t wanted to document them.  Sometimes I’m afraid that the person I’m making the cake for will see the pictures that will take away from their appreciation of my creation…to know that it wasn’t how I envisioned the design in my head, that I had to modify the color or pose because the original idea wasn’t working out, or that some design detail was actually an afterthought because I accidentally made a mistake and had to cover the problem.  Some day I will write about those big bloopers, maybe they will seem less traumatic with the passage of time. For my first blooper post, I will start with a recent incident that wasn’t too bad.

Cupcakes cooled and ready to be frosted.

Cupcakes cooled and ready to be frosted.

At the last minute, I decided to make a cake for one of my coworkers.  He’s a single guy, and most of the others in his group are guys, too, so I knew they would appreciate a home-baked cake and wouldn’t be too picky about the decoration or mind cake from a mix.  So I decided to make a cupcake-cake, using a white cake mix.  I also had some store-bought buttercream frosting and added lemon extract and fresh lemon juice to give it a nice flavor.


The finished cupcake cake, pretty and smelling lemony-delicious!

I arranged and frosted the cakes on my cake carrier tray because I didn’t have a cardboard or flat serving platter big enough for all the cupcakes. Remember it was a last-minute project!  As I was packing up the cakes, I realized that the cupcakes were slipping a bit, so I decided to tie a ribbon around them.  One of fun those afterthoughts – it made the cake look like a present and added a nice touch.

Normally that would be the end of my post, but on to the blooper part…

Well, the next day after driving to work and getting the cupcakes to the office, I opened the box and…as you can see above, the cupcakes had slid off the tray and five of the ones on the edge had toppled over.  So much for the ribbon idea.  Luckily for me, the birthday boy was not at his desk.  I was able to get the cupcakes back in place without too much trouble and the cake was in presentable condition to surprise him when he got back.  And of course everyone enjoyed eating the cupcakes.

So tip learned:  make sure the surface under cupcake cake is not slick!  I remember someone telling me never to use those waxy cake doilies just for that reason. Sometimes I use a dab of frosting to make the cardboard stick or a piece of rubbery drawer liner under the cake cardboard depending on the situation.

Happy baking and remember,  “Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new.” – Albert Einstein


Birthday cupcakes after repairs.

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