Books are great inspiration when it comes to novelty cakes. 3D book cakes can be designed in many forms. It can be a single closed book, a stack of closed books or an open book.
Book cakes may sound like difficult to make but in reality they are fairly easy even though a bit of carving is required on the cake. Here is one such cake I have made. It’s an open book, and the decoration was done entirely in butter icing.
How to Decorate an Open Book Cake
This is what I used to make the cake:
One 6 inches by 10 inches rectangle cake - It was a single layer cake baked using my chocolate cake recipe. The book cake would not look nice if it’s too tall, so I made a single layer cake. The height was approximately 2 inches.
Butter icing – butter icing is stiffer than buttercream making it easier to hold shape and work with. Click here for my butter icing recipe. The entire cake was covered with butter icing. I did not tint the icing, so the icing had a natural ivory hue to it.
Buttercream– I used buttercream to pipe the wordings on the cake as well as pipe the leaves and scrolls as part of the decoration on the cake. I also used buttercream to cover the sides of the cake.
Royal icing – I used royal icing for the pink flowers. These were made in advance. I piped them onto pieces of parchment paper and left them to set and dry before peeling them off to be put on the cake. When using royal icing for flower piping, the consistency has to be stiff so that the petals can hold shape. I prefer to use royal icing compared to buttercream simply because I live in a hot and humid country and buttercream is difficult to handle in such high temperature.
Wilton round piping tip #3 and star tip to the book cover (in dark pink), the birthday wordings, the sides of the book, i.e. the pages, as well as the leaves and scrolls.
And here is how I decorated the cake:
Once the cake was baked and cooled, the first step is to carve the center of the open book. I placed the cake with the longer side lying horizontal. I measured the length of the cake and using a toothpick, marked a line that runs vertically right down the center. I then cut out a triangle wedge in the center making sure the depth of the wedge does not go more than half of the thickness of the cake itself. Then, slice off another tiny triangle piece at the bottom, exactly opposite the top wedge.
Next, I sliced off the sides of the cake slanting outwards to denote the pages on an open book.
Once that is done, I cleaned all the crumbs on and around the cake. I then covered the top with butter icing and smoothed it. Next, was the sides of the book. I used a star nozzle for this. I pressed the nozzle against the cake while piping so that the icing comes out from the nozzle serrated, and that produces the pattern of stacked pages' lines.
Next, I did the book cover. With some dark pink icing (using the round tip), I piped one line of icing all around the book for the cover. I also piped the same icing in the tiny triangle piece cut out earlier.
At this stage the book was literally ready for me to decorate the open pages.
For the open pages, I wrote the birthday message first. After that, I did the flower deco. I piped the scrolls, place the royal icing flowers in place and then piped some green buttercream icing flowers (the same one I used for the scrolls). For the finishing touches, I added silver dragees at the end of each scroll.
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