Thursday, April 19, 2012

Minecraft Diamond Ore Cake

Minecraft is very popular at our house, and for my older son's recent birthday we made a diamond ore cake. In case you don't know what they look like, or can't be bothered to follow the link to Minecraft Wiki, here's what we were going for:

When it comes to projects like this, I like to see if I can find somebody else who has managed to make something similar, so I can pretty much just do whatever they did since it seemed to work out for them. Like I needed another excuse to browse around Pinterest, right? While I didn't find a diamond ore cake, I discovered a couple of different dirt block cakes: one is exceptionally well done with thousands of little rolled fondant squares, and the other is more simple, made by YouTuber MincraftChick. I also found these Minecraft Cake cupcakes, which I think are lovely.

Making a cake that's a cube shape was easy enough, we just used three 8-inch square cake layers. Since they're between 2 and 3 inches tall each, stacked up they looked enough like a cube. We decided to add an extra level of fun and color the cake layers themselves gray with blue flecks, so that when you cut into the cake, it looked like diamond ore, not cake. This didn't work out so well, as the blue sprinkles I planned to use (like funfetti) dissolved in the cake batter and turned it an awful blueish gray.

I used Duncan Hines Classic White cake mix and added around 4-5 drops of Super Black food coloring to make the layers gray. We then sandwiched them together with gray-tinted buttercream and a generous layer of the blue sprinkles.

We were going for a marbled gray rolled fondant to cover the cake with, but by the time I got it rolled out large enough, the color was pretty thoroughly mixed in. We tried embossing the square pattern on the top and sides of the cube, and that looked okay, but we ultimately opted to add rolled fondant squares in gray and various shades of blue all over the cake. I'm pleased with the results.
To go along with the diamond ore cake we made dirt block treat pops. These are like cake pops, only made with rice cereal treats instead of cake. They're much easier and quicker to make, as they don't require multiple steps of chilling, and it's a firmer mixture to shape. These we dipped in chocolate bark coating and then dipped the tops in green sanding sugar.
We also constructed a pickaxe out of the rice cereal treat mixture and covered it with chocolate bark coating on the handle and white candy melts on the blade part.
Sadly, I neglected to get any pictures of the cake after it was cut so you could see all the gray goodness inside. One of the layers turned out just a shade or two darker than the others, as is typical. It's so hard to match colors exactly when you try to remix them.

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