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Christmas Cake Screw Up!

I would love to say that the final product of this cake is what I had planned it to be.  That would be a lie!  I was so excited to make a cake for the 30th birthday of a great friend.  I had planned to make an awesome, burgundy-colored, Christmas gift box cake–an open gift box–with a propped up open lid and tissue and elegant golds and silvers accenting the burgundy.  It was going to be amazing-I’m telling you!

However, I made..not 1…but 2 big cake-making mistakes!  First, I started off with the wrong color to end up with burgundy fondant.  It turns out that white fondant coupled with an ENTIRE jar of burgundy coloring gel will only get you a deeper and deeper shade of PURPLE.  Have you seen many elegant purple Christmas gifts?  Me neither.  So my first mistake brought the first design change.  This will be a white (thank goodness for a 20lb tub of white fondant) Christmas open gift box cake.  No problem.  Next, I did not leave enough time for my lid to dry.  This is the biggie.  Always, always leave enough time for your pieces to dry.  We had the lid sleeping overnight on our guest bed under a ceiling fan set of high and a floor fan on a chair blasting right on it.  Poor little guy was probably cold all night.  So I hoped I could prove the cake forums wrong and have my lid all dry and solid from over-night fanning.  We let it dry until the last possible minute before putting it on top of the cake.  And when we did (a few hours before the start of the party!) it cracked.  Un-repairable cracks.  No-way-to-fix-it cracks.  I-am-completely-screwed-cracks.  I can’t even think about taking pics to show on the blog because they have me so stressed out-cracks.  This problem was much worse than the color change.  I had cookie sheets full of fondant tissue, all dried and ready to fill the open gift box that couldn’t be used.  And I still have them, stored for when I attempt another one of these cakes.  There was no way to make another lid–no way.  Trust me, I had thought of everything.

So, I still had to finish the cake.  I sat and thought.  I sat and cried.  Really, I cried–ask Nick.  And I sat and decided to do a much simpler gift box cake and just rely on the fact that no one else knew what I had planned for the cake and would be pleased with the outcome just the same.  So I pressed on and finished the cake.  I actually was pleased with the outcome and proud of myself for being able to take a deep breath, let it go, and move on.  I thought it looked great and tasted great.  I tried a new cake recipe–pink champagne.  Yum.  So…here is the Christmas gift cake.  It is 3 layers of pink champagne cake with vanilla buttercream frosting.  This baby taught me many lessons.  Now I just need someone who needs a purple gift box cake in order to use all that dyed fondant and tissue!

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