AI'm a newbie cake decorator and things have been going amazing since I started 2 months ago. I taught myself to bake (and I'm actually good at it) and I've been turning out pretty nice cakes with such little experience.
THAT WAS UNTIL THE CURSED CAKE...
Last week a friend asked me to make a lemon cake for her husband. She wanted a cake for 2 people and I thought a 6 inch, 3 layer would be perfect. We came up with the idea of creating a dump truck with her 2 cats in the back and her dog "driving". We decided to go with fondant. It seemed like a great plan.
In the past 24 hours:
I made a truck in RKT covered in MC only to throw it in the trash hours later.
I made a second truck that I still hate, this time hand sculpted in MC with no RKT. With no other backup and time running out, I decided to keep it and hope the animals helped disguise how mundane the truck is.
The plan worked! The animals came out stellar. I started thinking hey this could go ok.
Baked my lemon cake with no issue until it came time to stack. Gravity hates me. Too much weight, not solid enough cake, slippery lemon curd. Despite my best effort, the cake talk and straight and perfect. But, again, no time for re-making.
I start to buttercream and the cake is falling apart. It's leaning and falling apart. I managed to get the icing on and put it in the fridge. I'm hoping some magical fridge cake fairy is in there fixing the mess.
Now all I can hope is that when I fondant it a) it goes well b) it somehow stabilizes the cake, which I know is not happening and c) it just makes it to my friends so her husband can see it before it all comes crashing down.
At least I can hold onto the fact that it may not be pretty but it will be the best lemon cake they gave ever tasted.
Have you all ever had a cursed cake?
Sorry to hear about your problems!
How about dowelling the cake with straws? I've not tried it in cakes that have very soft fillings but if you put two or three in it should help keep the cake together while you cover in buttercream? I've tried it on a 4" cake that I was struggling to cover in buttercream. I put the straws in before I the final coat of buttercream. You could make sure the straws are below the surface so that it doesn't stick out of the fondant, unless you're going to cover the top with decorations anyway.
AIf I had more time now (to find straws and buy them) before she picks it up, I would. Bubble straws are for sure the way to go. Up until now, my cakes have been dense enough and didn't have the curd filling; I haven't needed any support at all. But this one is just too tall and too light, in addition to the curd. I was able to get a decent coat of buttercream on it and if have lots of decorations I can add. This is definitely going to be a "hide your mistakes" cake. The only highlight is I learn new lessons every time. ;)
RMB I posted about a cursed cake like that the other week. I feel for you.
AIt sucks, especially as a newbie. You look at all these accomplishments so far and feel great until you get the cursed one. Suddenly I find myself questioning if I have the "talent" everyone is saying I do. This is one cake I can't wait to see leave. Then I need a couple days to regroup.
Don't take it too much to heart RMB. It sucks, especially as an oldie too. As an amateur I think some cakes are just not meant to be. Be grateful it's just one cake and not a whole month of them. Learn from the mistakes you made in it and move on.