The dreaded sphere of cake! How?! How do you ice a BALL of cake???
I am going to take you through the process step-by-step whilst I show you how to make a crystal ball cake. I will include affiliate links for the equipment I use myself so if you need it you can get it.
To bake the cake it will help a great deal if you get yourself some sphere tins. This link is for one tin only, if you want to bake both halves at the same time, you will need to buy two tins.
These tins are tricky to line. The best way to do it is to brush cake release all over the inside of your tin and then use two strips of greaseproof placed across your tin as some leverage if you need to ease the cake out. The cake release should do a good enough job that if you turn the cakes over before they have completely cooled they will fall cleanly out of the tin. The greaseproof is there as a bit of reassurance.
Trim the tops of your cakes using a large knife then use a cake leveller (or if you’re serious about cakes and want to go all out, the Agbay) to cut layers in your cakes where you can add your jam and/or buttercream filling.
You will want to trim one side of the entire sphere so it is flat rather than rounded as a level surface for your cake to sit. When you layer your cake with your filling, use a cranked palette knife to keep your hand away from the action.
Once all your layers of cake are together, you can add a crumb coat of buttercream to your cake using your cranked palette knife and then chill the cake in either the fridge or the freezer. If you use the fridge, it will probably need around 30 minutes. If you use the freezer, it will be more like 10 minutes. Your aim is to chill the buttercream, not the entire cake.
When your buttercream is chilled you can add another, more generous, crumb coat. I cannot emphasise this next bit enough if you plan on making a sphere cake of any kind.
Get yourself some Bellissimo Flexi Smoothers! This is the link for the medium set but there are both small and large available. Go with what you think is best for what you need, or all if you’re like me and can’t physically help yourself!
These flexi smoothers will allow you to get a gloriously, smooth buttercream foundation that you just can’t get with a palette knife. Well you probably could but it would take a lot longer.
When you have a nice, even coat of buttercream on your cake you can start on your fondant.
For the crystal ball misty effect, I marbled some grey paste into some white so it looked smoky. You can then roll your fondant out using a large non stick rolling pin until it is large enough to cover your cake.
If your buttercream is a bit soft then your fondant will stick well but if it is chilled you will need to rub a little shortening over your buttercream before you lay you fondant over.
Lift your rolled out fondant up and onto your cake and work to attach it to the top of the cake. As you work your way down you need to lift out any pleats and press the fondant onto the cake.
Use the excess fondant to tuck fondant underneath the edges of your cake so that when you trim the rest away, it doesn’t pull away from the cake. Trim away the excess.
Then get back onto your Bellissimo Flexi Smoothers! You can use them to buff over your fondant and tuck, trim and smooth your fondant right underneath your cake, reaching the parts your hands probably can’t.
Transfer your cake ball to a pre-iced board and then I made the ‘feet’ of my crystal ball using the FPC decorative leaves mould and spraying them with silver lustre spray. I then attached them with a little bit of water.
Hopefully after those steps, it’s not as terrifying as it first seems. Keep it all chilled and it’ll be a doddle!
Any questions, comment below, I’m happy to answer!
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