This weekend I received an undead cake order for a boy's 10th birthday party (this kid is going places). I decided on a graveyard theme with tombstone sugar cookies, chocolate cake layers, chocolate cream cheese frosting and a strawberry "blood" mousse filling with fondant bones, brains, and entrails. I tried using the marshmallow fondant because it's cheaper and way easier to make than regular sugar fondant but I found out the hard way it doesn't hold up nearly as well and is more difficult to dye. Here are some pick and recipes to follow..Note: This cake is pretty time consuming.
Sugar cookie tombstones Recipe (they keep their shape)
1 3/4 cups (230 grams) all purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup (113 grams) unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 cup (150 grams) granulated white sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
Black food coloring as needed
In the bowl of your electric mixer (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy (about 3 to 4 minutes). Add the eggs and vanilla extract and beat until combined. Add the flour mixture and beat until you have a smooth dough.
Divide the dough in half and wrap each half in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about one hour or until firm enough to roll.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (177 degrees C) and place rack in center of oven. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper.
Remove one half of the chilled dough from the refrigerator and, on a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough to a thickness of 1/4 inch (1 cm). (Keep turning the dough as you roll, making sure the dough does not stick to the counter.) Cut out cookies using a lightly floured tree cookie cutter and transfer cookies to the prepared baking sheet. Place the baking sheets with the unbaked cookies in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes to chill the dough which prevents the cookies from spreading and losing their shape while baking.
Chocolate Cake Recipe (adapted from Paula Deen Ya'll)
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 cups sugar
3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup vegetable oil
1 cup strong brewed coffee, cooled
3 large eggs
1 (8-ounce) container sour cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line muffin pans with paper liners and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk flour, sugar, cocoa powder, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Add oil, coffee, and eggs. Beat at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Mix in the sour cream and vanilla.
Spoon the batter evenly into prepared 13 * 9 inch pan. Bake for 20-25 min.