Making a fish cake is pretty easy depending on the level of detail you want. Like other shaped cakes, you dont need to buy a cake pan to make the cake one time. There are several images on the internet. With a sheet of foam board or cardboard, you can make any shape you desire. You can buy a foam board at any craft store like Hobby Lobby or Michaels. For cardboard, go to a local store and see if theyll give you one they plan to throw away. Making your own template lets you adjust the size you need to feed all your guests. This cake will feed about 30.
This was my first attempt at a fish cake so I found the image I wanted online and attempted to draw it on cardboard. You dont need to be an artist, just draw it to get an idea of how big it will be. Most cake slices for a party should be 1 x 2 so you can draw the slices on the back side of your template to make sure youll have enough pieces.
Bake two sheet cakes that are big enough for your template. I made my cake half vanilla, half chocolate:
Because this cake may be a little heavy, use foam board as the main board for the finished cake. Youll need to cover the board with wrapping paper and then clearing wrapping. Use the template to make sure the board will be the right size.
As I mentioned in a previous post, immediately after I take cakes out of the oven I wrap them tightly in plastic wrap and put them in the freezer. The condensation that develops in the plastic wrap gets soaked back into the cake when you take it out of the freezer to thaw. While the cakes are still wrapped in plastic, use the template to cut the cakes.
This is the perfect time to slice these cakes in half and add some filling. I used pink buttercream to match the frosting. Round the top edge of the cake all the way around. Move the cake to the cake board youll use to display the finished cake and cover with a light layer of buttercream (also known as a crumb coat). Refrigerate the cake for 15 to 20 minutes so the buttercream firms up.
Once firm, put a second coat of buttercream all over the cake. Dont worry about appearance at this point. You want the buttercream thick enough to cover the crumb coat.
Once you have the frosting all over the cake, using the spatula, smooth out the frosting. Let cake sit for 10-15 minutes to develop a slight crust. Using Viva paper towels lay paper towel on cake and softly smooth the frosting. Pull paper towel off and move to another part of the cake until youve smoothed the entire cake.
Using fondant and a craft knife, I cut out most of the decorations. I used cookie cutters to cut out the shapes for the eye and tail as well as alphabet cutters for the name. Use a bamboo kabob stick for texturing. Be creative and see what you have around your kitchen to make shapes and textures and have fun with it.