Desserts · Recipes

Total Solar Eclipse Cake

Monday is the big day!  A total solar eclipse will be traversing the continental US and going (almost) directly over my city.   The last time there was a total solar eclipse in St. Louis was in 1442 (that’s before Columbus sailed the ocean blue).  The next one to head our way isn’t expected until 2505!

Apparently so many people will be descending on the St. Louis area traffic may come to a stand still.  Since I work from home and am fine being cooped up inside for a day this does not pose a problem for me.  And, my kids are back in school so I don’t have to worry about being asked 19,000 questions or my kids burning their eyes out.  I’ll let their teachers worry about that.  I get to enjoy this phenomenon solo.  Please let there be good weather!

Of course I had to find a way to celebrate this occasion with food.  I love that local grocery stores are having deals on anything to do with the sky. You can get Sun Chips, Capri Suns, North Star Fudge Bars and Sun Flowers (actual flowers) all on sale.  I wanted a dessert treat though (of course) so I took to Pinterest.  There are so many truly creative people out there and I’m so glad that Pinterest gives me the opportunity to steal from them.

I was going to try this cake because it just looks so cool.  Plus, I loved everything moon and stars during my late high school/early college days so it made me feel quite nostalgic.

I saw these cookies which I was considering.  Although very cute I wanted something… more.

Then I found it.  I found this post showing you how to make the “corona” that will be visible during the total solar eclipse and I got excited!

One of the great things about this technique is that you can apply it to almost anything: cake, cupcakes, cookies, it even said pancakes.  And, I have never worked with fondant before so it gave me the chance to try something new.

You can make this as challenging or as simple as you want.  You need:

  1. A base (cookies, cake, cupcakes, etc.)
  2. Icing
  3. Black Fondant
  4. Cornstarch or Powdered Sugar

I made a small cake and some cupcakes from scratch.  You can buy a box mix.  Or even buy cupcakes from a local bakery/grocery store.

I made ganache, let it cool and beat it so it was more like icing.  You can buy a can of icing at the store.  IMG_7197

I purchased black fondant from a craft store.  I have never made fondant and I wasn’t going to try today; especially black fondant.  I can imagine the mess.  If you want to make your own black fondant- live it up!

I had a little trouble getting my cake out of the pan (ridiculous) so my cake went from an 8″ cake to a nice and trimmed 6″ cake.  IMG_7202

I covered the cake with frosting (the fondant needs something to stick to). Then, I rolled out my fondant.  This is an arm work out.  Fondant is stiff and it needs to be rolled thin.  I placed it on a piece of wax paper so it wouldn’t stick to anything.  Then, I banged it with my rolling pin, kneaded it with my hands then rolled it out until it was 1/8″ thick (very thin).  I covered the iced cake with the fondant and smoothed it with my new “fondant smoother.”  I cut the edge with a sharp knife.

Then, I moved on to the cupcakes.  I rolled out more fondant.  I turned each cupcake upside down and cut around the top so I knew the fondant circles for each cupcake would be the right size (my cupcakes are never perfectly uniform).  I worked with one cupcake at a time:

  1. Cut fondant
  2. Frost cupcake
  3. Put fondant disc on top of frosted cupcake

Then, I was ready for the actual decorating.  You are supposed to:

  1. Put a small glass in the middle of your dessert
  2. Spread cornstarch (or powdered sugar) around the circle
  3. Spread the cornstarch outward (with finger or brush)
  4. Remove inner glass

I knew I would need a little practice.  So, I rolled out an extra piece of fondant and got my grandmother’s cordial glass.  It seems like it would be the right size.IMG_7203

I spread the cornstarch around, used a pastry brush to fan it out then removed the glass. Not the exact effect I was going for…IMG_7204

I flipped the practice piece over and tried again.  This time I used a tiny paint brush of my kids and squiggled out a few lines in the hopes it look more like rays of the sun trying to peek out behind the moon.  Much better results…IMG_7206

I started with cupcakes and quickly realized my grandma’s glass was too big for the cupcakes so I used the top to a mini salt shaker.  It worked great.

 

I saved the cake for last.  A shot glass was the perfect size for my little 6″ cake.  If you had an 8 or 9 inch cake maybe a juice glass would work better.IMG_7220 2

Then, to be the most annoying parent ever I took the cupcakes into school on the very first day.  There have been too many desserts around this house so luckily I can now pawn them off on the teachers.  On the very first day.  First thing in the morning.  Like nothing else is going on.  Sorry (kind of).  But it’s educational, right?

The school got the cupcakes and we kept the little cake (and cake pops I made from the scraps of the cake disaster).

 

So there you have it; a super fun solar eclipse dessert!  How great would it be to put a large fondant disc decorated like this on a tart?!?!! I have no idea what it would taste like but you could call it “Total Eclipse Of The Tart.” That alone makes it totally worth it!

Remember to be safe and do not stare at the sun.  I hope everyone has good weather and will truly experience this spectacle.  Don’t worry about capturing it on film or video, let the professionals do that.  Enjoy the moment because you most likely won’t be here for the next one in 500 years!

8 thoughts on “Total Solar Eclipse Cake

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