I designed this Football Team Birthday Cake for my twin great-nephew’s second birthday. They are big football fans, and the two teams chosen were to represent their parents. Mom was from Washington, so the Huskies, and Dad was from Texas, so the Longhorns were used. I got the idea from looking at other football themed cakes, but really wanted something that was totally edible.
The field part of the cake is 2 13″X9″ cakes stacked together with a “Mud filling” (recipe can be found on line). I made all the frosting, fondant, and filling up 2 days before the birthday. I also made the helmets and goal posts 2 days in advance. The fondant jerseys were made the day of the party. The cake was made the day before. I just use regular cake mixes with a box of instant pudding added to the mix.
I used 2 batches of buttercream frosting. One for the dirty icing and the other for the cake decorations. I used 3 pounds of green fondant for the field. I make my own marshmallow fondant which is very easy. It is a 500g package of mini marshmallows with 2 tbsp. water. Put in a microwavable bowl and heat on high for 1 minute, then stir. Heat for about another 30 seconds or so to completely melt marshmallows. Take this mixture and put it in a Kitchen Aid type mixer if you have one (otherwise you will have to beat it by hand). Add 7-8 cups of powdered sugar, one cup at a time. You could add flavoring to it as well, which you would do at this point. You will probably have to knead in the last cup or two of powdered sugar.
Make sure you have plenty of shortening on your hands to prevent sticking and a well covered surface with powdered sugar. Once it is no longer sticky, you have the right consistency. Wrap in plastic wrap, then wrap in foil, then put in a plastic bag to keep it from drying out. Do not put in fridge. It will keep up to 3 weeks on the counter. This makes 2 pounds of fondant. You will then have to tint the fondant whatever color you want, by kneading in the gel food coloring. This is a very time consuming process. I used a pound of white fondant and 1/2 pound of fondant divided, one purple one orange for the team colors.
The helmets were made from rice krispie treats. They were about the size of oranges. I had to mold them using wax paper, as the rice krispie treats will stick to your hands and pull apart otherwise. I made them into round shapes with flat bottoms. I cut out the face guard section from the circle, and cut out the 3 holes (I wouldn’t use this method again, to cumbersome with rice krispies: better to use gumpaste or black licorice), I then had to mold back on to the helmet these face guard pieces and it was a bit of a challenge to get them to retain the shape I wanted. I inserted dowels (lollipop sticks cut to the right size) into the bottom for insertion into the cake on party day. I then made the white chocolate molding paste (1 package of candy melts in white; follow package directions for melting). To this you add 5-6 Tbsp. of Karo syrup and stir until it comes together. However, before I added the syrup, I took some of the melted chocolate and drizzled it onto the face guard pieces. I added the molding chocolate (1/2 the amount) to the helmet and smoothed it out with my hands and a small metal spatula. I repeated the process with the other helmet. I carved out the design of the longhorn and W with a toothpick. The helmets were painted with gel food coloring mixed with vodka to thin out. You need very little vodka (alcohol evaporates). I got the gold color of the Huskies helmet by painting on vodka in small sections and then painting on gold pearl dust. I painted these by putting them to rest on the top of a glass so the dowels could hang inside the glass.
The goal posts were formed with gum paste and inserted with a lollipop stick for insertion into cake on party day. They do need at least 1 day to dry firm.
I made the football from 1/2 a recipe of the chocolate molding paste. I made the lines with white buttercream frosting. I did this a day in advance.
Field is dirty iced (or crumb coated) first, then the green fondant placed on. The fondant jerseys were made next (from a homemade template from paper). I used the number 2 on each jersey as that was the age they were turning, but you can use any number. I cut out a template from paper for the 2 and then placed it on the jersey to cut out the number, then used the template on the team color to cut out. The team color number is then inserted into the cut out section of the jersey. I added the stripes in the team colors from fondant cut into thin strips and attached with water to make them stick. I then draped the jerseys onto the cake at an angle to make everything fit. I wrote their names on it with a food grade marker.
then marked the lines of the field and used buttercream icing to draw the lines and mark the end zone. Spacing is key, so you have equal lines. I used a food grade marker to write in the yard numbers. I used the team color to write the team into the end zone section (end zone was 2″). I wrote the happy birthday message on the side of the cake with a food grade marker. I added the grass border around the base of the cake with a grass tip. I added a bit of grass around the goal post and at the point ends of the football to insert the candles into.
Once I arrived at the party location, I added the helmets, the football, and the goal posts, and did the final little bits of grass frosting as required.
To serve, just remove the goal posts, helmet, football, and jersey if the want to be saved. Cuts up to 35 servings.
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