I made this cake for some friends of mine. They just asked me for Hedwig but I got carried away as I am a big fan of Harry potter.
So I saw this fantastic cake stand on ebay that looked like a bird cage and that’s when this cake was born. Everything just had to fit around the bird cage.
I started by making a number(4 in all) of vanilla maderia cakes in my favourite stainless steel roasting pan that I keep just for cakes. Its about 12 x 24 inches. Anyway I cut one up and stacked with jam and butter cream to form a large rectangle that fit neatly on the cake stand and about 10 inches high this would be Hedwig. I roughly hand carved an owl shape standing on a twig. I then butter iced and covered in white fondant. I left this to settle for a couple of hours before marking in where I wanted the eyes beak and wings etc. I’m sorry I have no easy way to do this part its trial and error so to speak.
I had to keep shaving bits off so that the cage bit fit over the bird without touching it. I then rolled out some white fondant and cut small rough feather shapes which I attached to the bird with water. I then started to sculpt the eyes and beak and finished adding feathers around the face. I used a black food gel to colour the bird like Hedwig. I also used food gels for the eyes, beak and other details. Once Hedwig was finished I realised that he wouldn’t contain the required amount of portions for the birthday guests so I decided to add some books.
I have always loved the monster book so I just had to have him in it. I also added a potions book and Hogwarts history and a rule book just to give me enough portions.
These were all made from stacked rectangles of cake sandwiched with jam and butter cream and covered in fondant and painted with food gels.
I just loved the monster book as every time I added more detail it became more realistic and my kids would keep coming in to see how he was coming along.(they are my biggest and most truthful critics)For a laugh I thought I would put Harry potters glasses sticking out of his mouth. I made the actual glass using clear isomalt which is like candy(just follow instructions on pkt can get from some online cake decorating companies). I also made the luck potion bottle with this and added a little green food colouring for the liquid inside. Got a few nasty burnt fingers from this but it was well worth the effort.
The final touches
Finally I made a golden snitch from rice krispy treats covered in fondant and painted with gel and dusted with metallic edible dust which I attached to the top of the cage. I also rolled out a cream fondant for the scroll and painted the birthday message and then stained and snipped at it to make it look old.
I add final details as I am covering with fondant and also apply food gel colours as I am going along. This helps me see if it’s looking right.
My friends and the party guests absolutely loved this cake and all stood around looking at it for a good half an hour before deciding not to cut it until the party finished the next morning.
I really enjoyed making this cake and good luck if you decide to give it ago.