DIY: Minecraft Terrain Block Cake With Marzipan Piggies!
Minecraft is extremely popular with my three boys, so it didn't really come as a surprise when Boy#1 requested a "Minecraft cake" for his birthday this year. I put my thinking cap on and decided to make a terrain block -- the "easy factor" is a key component of my homemade cakes. I like to have fun with them, but I neither need or want them to look cake store perfect. Using terrain blocks as the basis makes it easy to dress up the top in an infinite number of ways.
To start, mix up a bowl of white cake batter and divide it into two parts. One part is tinted red to be lava or redstone, the other needs a bit of cocoa and chocolate chips to be iron ore. Bake them in 9"x9" cake pans. Let these cool completely before cutting them into blocks.
Once cut into blocks, place the pieces randomly in the square cake pans, leaving plenty of space in between. Mix up a chocolate cake recipe, and ladle the batter around and over the cake blocks, and bake it all again. When it is done, leave it to cool completely.
This is where it gets fun! The neat thing about Minecraft is that everything is very boxy and square. My favorite boxy and square things in Minecraft are the pigs. What would a terrain block cake be without little square piggies? European style delis and bakeries and larger grocery stores generally have marzipan on hand.
If you are unfamiliar with marzipan, it is essentially almond paste play dough. It takes colour easily -- you can use food coloring or gel coloring . You can then mold it into the shapes that you require to make pigs. attach smaller pieces to the main body using a bit of water. Larger pieces can be held on with half of a toothpick.
Before stacking the cake layers, each layer needs to be trimmed to show the different blocks inside. Cut one corner out of the top layer to stack on the very top. Stick the layers together with chocolate icing. Don't worry about making it perfect -- a) it's a kids' cake and b) Minecraft is pixelated, so a little messiness is a-okay.
Once the layers have been stacked, take some green royal icing and cover the surfaces where you want grass. I added some green coconut for texture, though it didn't take the colour as well as I hoped it would. Let the icing set.
To add the pigs, take two toothpicks and insert them where you wish your pig to stand. Leave about 1/2" sticking out of the cake. Carefully push the marzipan pig down onto the toothpicks, making sure it is secure.
All that is left is to stand back and watch your child's jaw drop with surprise!
And one more piggy, because I love them so!