If the sweater above was real and not made of cake and buttercream, would you wear it? (I hope you said no!) Would you wear it to an ugly Christmas sweater party? (I hope you said yes!)
A few weeks ago Wilton sent me a sample of their Decorator's Choice cake mix, and I've been ruminating on what to make with it ever since. Then recently, their Christmas product box arrived at my front doorstep with a Sweater Cake Pan inside. It was a done deal, folks. I giggled all the way to the kitchen.
The pan holds exactly 1 box of cake mix (convenient!), and what's better, the baked cake releases from the non-stick pan beautifully! The cake mix is designed to have a sturdy texture and yields less crumbs on the outside - and that's exactly what I experienced. I don't think I've ever had a cake that turned out of the pan with such a flawless surface! It's tasty, too, and not at all dense or tough.
As for the decorating, I covered the cake in buttercream tinted with Wilton's No-Taste Red gel food color. The rest of the decorations were made with ready-made fondant and sprinkles. I had no template or plan for the ugly sweater - I just listened to my inner ugly sweater-designer (smile).
Decorating the cake with the fondant pieces was so easy. I just placed the shapes on top of the buttercream and they adhered well without the addition of water or corn syrup. I tooled around each fondant cut-out with a gum paste quilting wand, and that really transformed the cake and made it look "sewn". You can find a link to this tool at the end of the post - I loved the effect!
Below you'll find links to all the items you'll need to make the sweater cake. In hindsight, I wish I'd had some mini ornament or snowflake cookie cutters.That would have made life a little simpler, but still, I think the cake turned out pretty cute.
And pretty ugly!
Ugly Sweater Cake Materials:
Sweater Cake Pan
Wilton's Decorator Preferred Cake Mix, baked as directed in the Sweater Cake Pan
Wilton's Decorator Preferred Fondant in green, yellow and white
Wilton No-Taste Red Gel Food Color
Fondant quilting tool
Jumbo Christmas Nonpareils
You can find my buttercream recipe here, and my button-making technique at the very bottom of this post.