Here is the final product! This cake took a long time to make, but it was a labor of love for my boyfriend’s 30th, and I loved every minute of working on it. I learned a lot and surprised myself with what I could create. The reference pics I printed out helped immensely in getting the likeness of the Goombas and red shells accurate. Here’s an in-progress shot of them:
What took longest was probably coloring the fondant to match the exact Mario colors. The fondant I had was white, so it took a lot of color gel to get the right color. You can buy colored fondant, but it’s mostly available in just primary colors and black. I’m a bit of a perfectionist, so had to make sure this was accurate. I think the colors turned out pretty well!
Here’s a shot of the other pieces in progress. I bought a brick impression mat that I pressed into the brown colored fondant for the cake board and the brick blocks. The teeth and dots on the piranha plants are made with royal icing. I was originally going to do these with gumpaste, which would take forEVER, but had some royal icing available, so tried that. I think it turned out way better than it would have with gumpaste.
I didn’t initially plan to make Mario – I was way too intimidated by it. He’s such an iconic figure and I didn’t think I’d be able to do him justice. A Super Mario cake without Mario wouldn’t seem quite right though, so I went for it. May as well try, right? Worst case I wouldn’t use him.
A friend of mine at work happened to have a plastic Mario figure that I used as a guide for proportions and colors. I’ll admit that Mario was a bit of an afterthought, and I made him rather quickly after the whole cake was put together. Overall, I think he turned out pretty good for a first try. I’m impressed with how he turned out, but I definitely see areas of improvement. I should have made the little buttons on his overalls and the M on his hat (I didnt even realize I missed that until a few days ago where I saw it on every Mario everywhere). I think it took me about 20 or 30mins to make him once I had all the colors done.
Overall, I think this cake took about 20 hours to make, start to finish. Definitely my biggest accomplishment to date!
What I learned:
- new square cake pans worked great
- first time carving and decorating with Rice Krispie treats
- first time making figures out of fondant
What I would do differently:
- next time I’d use gumpaste for the figures – it dries harder and faster
- spend more time on Mario and focus on the details
- more variety of Super Mario characters (Koopas, Toad, etc.)