Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Painting Cakes

My first real ambition was to be an artist, it was an urge that failed to survive an art 'A' level (although A levels were where I discovered History of Art so it wasn't an entirely wasted two years) and now the desire to create things is mostly channelled into baking. The thing I really love about Christmas cake is the chance to decorate it and this year I'm really indulging that. These are two small cakes that have been given as presents, the painting is inspired by Fiona Cairns 'Seasonal Baking'. 

I've used the really concentrated food colouring pastes exactly like watercolours and am reasonably pleased with the results. I think the pomegranate design probably worked better than my attempt at an orthodox icon (the gold leaf doesn't look great in the picture but is rather more convincing on the cake and I added some silver balls too...) but it's by no means a disaster.

To get a good painting surface it's better to ice the cake a day before to let it dry a bit first and you really need to dilute the colour or it won't dry for days. Mistakes can be sponged of reasonably easily when the colour is quite dilute and generally the whole process is quite simple if a little sticky. 


  1. That's such a great idea - I suspect I'd be sponging off a lot of mistakes though!

  2. They're both beautiful, Hayley! Not sure how I'd feel about putting a knife into the top one, though ;)