For a wonderfully fun joint 13th birthday party we were asked to create a rather magical Harry Potter themed cake. Our brief was to design and make a large cake for 40 servings adorned with edible decorations including… a sorting hat, wand, name plaques, Harry Potter’s famous round glasses, the iconic Gryffindor scarf and a small Dobby character perched on the cake board!
The cake itself was filled with a crowd pleasing Madagascan vanilla and strawberry preserve and crumb coated with silky vanilla buttercream before being double iced with Satin Ice fondant! We chilled the cake once smothered with its crumb coat to help keep the corners lovely and sharp before icing. Satin Ice has a wonderful elasticity to it which really helps cover square edges.
To make Harry Potter’s wand we used modelling chocolate sculpted and moulded into shape before we added a wood texture with a sharp veining tool. It was then hand painted with different shades of brown food colouring before the fun shooting stars were added for a playful effect!
We created all of the decorative elements (except for the scarf as it needed to drape down the sides) a day before the cake was baked and assembled so they could set and dry appropriately. The names and birthday message were hand painted onto banners and a scroll ‘aged’ with edible brown petal dust before being attached to the front of the design. We thought that utilising the Harry Potter font and placing the messages on a weathered scroll and old fashioned banners would work much better with the overall design than just placing them on using letter cutters.
The 100% edible sorting hat was particularly fun for us to create. We began with a large ball of a 50/50 modelling chocolate and fondant mix before moulding a tall conical shape. With some extra fondant/modelling chocolate we rolled out and cut a large circle for the brim of the hat before thinning the edges with a large ball tool. The hat and brim were then intentionally scoured, ‘beaten’ and re-moulded to look aged and weathered. Then we sculpted in dents and the hollow facial features by hand, added the little patch at the side with some little stitching detail and hand painted sections roughly to add to the aged look of the piece.
This cake was a lot of fun for us to design and decorate. We even toyed with the idea of having a Harry Potter marathon for research purposes, but then we took one look at our bake and design sheets for the weeks running up to this cake’s due date and nearly fainted. There are such iconic and memorable styles and looks from the book and film series that we luckily had more than enough inspiration from memory, and pictures, alone to re-create the elements we needed.
For a future Harry Potter themed cake we’d love to create a giant carved and sculpted sorting hat cake nestled on a flurry of house scarves!