It's birthday time at my house. My oldest is 4-years-old today. This is where I would normally let out a great big sigh, get all nostalgic, weepy, and share far to detailed stories about her birth. I will spare you. What I will tell you is that cakes are a big deal in my house. Forget the presents, it's not a birthday until you have had a piece of cake. This probably goes a long way to explain why I am so chubby.
I asked my daughter what type of cake she wanted for her party this year and she answered, "A roly poly cake of course." Yes, my little tutu wearing, flowers in her hair, girly-girl, wanted creepy crawlies on her cake. I knew she was roly poly crazy, but this kind of took it to a whole new level. I'm fine with it, and frankly glad she has so many sides to her personality. Plus I was actually starting to get a little worried I was raising a fashionista and not the socially awkward child I had always wanted. Turns out she has a socially awkward side after all.
So, what is a Mommy to do when her daughter asks for roly poly cake? Make fondant roly polys of course.
We started off our project with store bought fondant. You can find it on most craft store's cake supply aisle. This is actually only the second time we have ever worked with fondant.
Fondant is a great medium for kids (and adults). If you have never worked with it before you should give it a whirl. The material is edible and the stuff just molds and drys like clay. It is easily cut, rolled, and colored. You want to work with a bit at a time and keep the majority covered. The stuff can dry out pretty quickly. I don't know if this is how the professionals do it, but I kept a very small bowl of water around so we could lightly moisten the fondant. This was good for when it dried out too much or you want to add more details like the lips and eyes.
To color fondant just add a little food color and knead away. It's messy, but kids love squishing it up. The food coloring I used was a gel and washed off our hands pretty easily. I'm assuming results will vary depending on the food coloring you decide to use.
Once we colored our fondant we began to shape it. We rolled them into worms. Hint: to keep the fondant from sticking to your work surface you can dust it with a little flour.
Above is the roly poly my daughter made. She did the body and the face. Per her request I later assisted with with some of the finer details. We didn't have the money to invest in fancy tool so we shaped things with our hands, molded with tooth picks, cut with knives. OK, I did all the cutting. This one became Little Brother Roly Poly.
After we put them all together I gave them a little dusting with gray pearl dust. This is basically edible sparkles. It's also something you will find on the cake aisle.
Before we knew it we had created a family of 5 roly polys: Daddy, Mommy, Big Sister, Little Brother, and Baby Sister. Not bad for a couple of amateurs.
After we were done making our family we wrapped them up and stored them till it's time to decorate our cake. Our little guys are waiting till our local bakery finishes the garden and dirt patch for our roly polys to live. Wait, you didn't think I was crazy enough to attempt to make an entire cake for 40 people did you? I have 3 kids under 5 at home. I'm obviously insane, but I'm not that insane. No, we are cheating. I'm OK with that.
Now I encourage you to get out there and play. Seriously, any day is a good day for cake. Or, to make cake toppers.
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