My son has really been into the solar system/outer space recently, so we agreed to design and make his 5th birthday cake a Solar System cake. I decided to make a 9×13 sheet cake from a regular cake mix, since I figured that would give me a good “canvas” to start with.
Beginning with white frosting, we used liquid food coloring (note that in retrospect, powder or gel food coloring would have worked better, as the liquid made the frosting quite runny) to make orange and deep blue frosting for the sun and sky, respectively. The blue sky looks more like a daytime sky than a nighttime sky, but we used lots of – ahem – “creative license” in this cake!
The “asteroid belt” separating the inner and outer planets was sprinkled on using silver-colored coarse sugar (Festival brand Glitter Crystals, purchased at Hobby Lobby). The planets themselves were made from Wilton’s ready-to-use fondant and round fondant cutters. I had never used fondant before, and am not a “crafty” person, but it was so easy to use. We also blended some colors to create the blue/green of Earth and the red/orange/yellow marbling of Jupiter. We dusted a few of the planets, including the rings of Saturn, with this awesome stuff called “pearl dust,” also by Wilton. It comes in gold, silver, and other colors (we used silver).
I won’t be moving to Baltimore or changing my name to Duff Goldman anytime soon, but I, and more importantly, my son, are very pleased with the result. Simple and effective!