My grandsons, Sam almost 5 (he is now!) and Alex almost 3, requested a John Deere birthday cake. Except for both of their first birthday cakes the rest have all been transportation themed cakes. This year I decided to pass on making a cake with 'wheels' and focus on a cake showcasing how the John Deere equipment is used. I was determined to make farm cakes. Sam will have "Sam's Produce Farm' and Alex would have "Alex's Livestock Farm". John Deere tractors and trailers in both the 1:32 and 1:64 scales were ordered. I was requested by the boys to have pigs, horses, chicken and sheep on the cake!
Prior to baking the cakes I began to work on the veggies and other items that were to go on the cakes. I used "gum paste", which I had never used before! Once I determined the in's and out's of using the gum paste work on the cake went a little more smoothly. All produce chosen for the cake was to be typical to the south as we live in Savannah, GA. Vidaila onions, watermelons, tomatoes, potatoes, and some cotton for good measure were all to be featured on the cakes. These were all made of gum paste dyed the appropriate colors and shaped to represent each item.
Also made of gum paste were the adorable "pink" pigs and the brown dog. I am far from a sculptor, but I amazed myself at how cute they were! Sam's cake started with a 16"x 16" square cake of a vanilla butter recipe. Alex's cake was a devil's food made in a 12"x 12" square pan. Each cake was placed on a cake board covered with brown paper for the rustic look. The cakes were iced with a buttercream icing dyed green to look like grass. The "produce" cake was iced with a variegated light brown icing on approximately 1/3rd of the cake to represent the "field".
The "produce" was lined up in rows just like on a farm. The watermelon was placed in it's own patch as was the cotton. The John Deere tractor and trailer was placed diagonally on the upper left corner of the cake and filled with "hay' (shredded wheat) and the veggies. Also placed on the cake was one of the "gum paste" pigs and the dog. In front of the cake was a "pond" of blue cellophane with a few ducks! Alex's cake featured a "pen" with fencing and additional "hay" for the cows, bull, sheep, and pig. This cake held a silo on a cake base iced grey for additional dimension, the entire cake was sprinkled with crumbled shredded wheat, additional "hay" was around the silo and in the trailer on the cake. This cake also featured additional gum paste pigs!
Two small "watering holes" were made of blue gel icing! Sam and Alex were totally thrilled with this Homemade John Deere Farming Birthday Cake!! Alex kept coming back and staring at his cake at the party. The party was a true "John Deere" party complete with hay ride pulled by a John Deere mower!