What #everythingiscake is all about

Have you ever bitten into a cola can or a soap dispenser? And how does a unicorn taste? Can a tree stump or a moss-covered forest scene be appetizing? However.

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In a world of hyper-realistic baking, everyday objects, food, toys, even animals, buildings, celebrities and entire landscapes can be recreated – and eaten. These pastries, which not only consist of icing but actually want to be a culinary highlight with sophisticated fillings, hardly have anything to do with solid confectionery. They are works of art.

Cake or swimming ring?

You can usually order them online. Above all, they can be admired on pictures of cake designers like Turkish Tuba Geçkil on social media or on streaming services like Netflix: the shows “Bake Squad” and “Baking Impossible” were released there for the first time in 2021, as Combine Baking with Special Challenges. The participating amateurs and professional creators are given tasks and must form edible ships that can also swim, or cars that are supposed to survive a crash test out of dough.

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In March, the show “Is It Cake?” added: After a back marathon, a jury must guess which object in a variety of items such as handbags, shoes, or rubber ducks is a cake or a pie.

“Theme cakes tell stories”

The sculptural baking is, so to speak, an increase in motif cake production, which is particularly popular in the United States. But the trend towards cute imitations is now also very popular in Germany: “It’s a big topic here, and it’s getting bigger and bigger,” says Esther Bange. The hamburger discovered his enthusiasm for motif cakes nine years ago, turned his hobby into his profession shortly afterwards and shares instructions and inspiration on his blog “Frau fon Dant”. Nearly 25,000 people follow her on her Instagram channel fraufondant; in October, her second book on motif cakes will be published by EMF-Verlag.

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For Bange, the general do-it-yourself trend has to do with the fact that sculptural baked goods are enjoying increasing popularity. “It’s about creating something yourself. Such a cake provides a good opportunity to create something individual, ”she says. It is especially suitable for occasions such as birthdays, weddings, anniversaries or anniversaries. “A motif cake tells a story. A cake can not do that, ”says Bange.

cakes in the form of beverage cans

One of the most famous bakers of hyperrealistic cakes is Luke Vincentini, a pastry chef from New Jersey. As early as 2018, he shared photos of his edible creations on Instagram, such as a Cartier jewelry box, an iPhone, or a purse with dollar bills. The media eventually reported on Vincentini, and especially pictures of his doughy bags of chips and soda cans spread online.

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Since 2020, the hyperrealistic cakes have felt like they were everywhere, they appeared as a forwarded message in messenger services and could be seen on Instagram, Twitter and Tiktok. One video in particular went viral under the hashtag #everythingiscake. It contained creations by Tuba Geçkil. She creates cakes in the form of fruits such as coconut or pomegranate, in the form of shoes, household appliances, plants and more. Even toilet paper rolls are good enough to eat at the cake designer from Istanbul, who has won several awards for his work. She is convinced: “Everything I hold in my hand can be cake.” Before founding her Red Rose Cake workshop in 2008, she was involved in visual arts.

Taste is just as important as appearance

All hyperrealistic cakes have the same basic principle: Inside, alternate layers of dough with a cream. On top of this is a layer of fondant, a mass of sugar that can be colored and shaped as desired.

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The impression can quickly arise that these impressive structures are all about appearance. Esther Bange sees it differently, though: “Enjoyment and taste are just as important as with any other cake,” she says. “The figures on a cake become hard and are then more intended to be kept as a memory. Whether you eat the fondant or not is a matter of taste. ” In the end, it is the inside of the cake that is crucial: “And it tastes as good or bad as any other cake, depending on how well you have baked it.” emphasizes Bange.

Bake a motif cake yourself: Tips from the expert

To try a motif cake, you need not only some accessories, but also a lot of time. “Basically, such cakes are always super time consuming, especially compared to baking a normal cake,” says the hamburger.

First and foremost, Bange sees cakes that look like ordinary everyday objects as a kind of art form: “These are cakes that you do not just shake out of your mouth. You need to consider in advance how exactly you want to move forward and how it all stays stable. You increase the level of difficulty from project to project. ” There are also special techniques to create the perfect illusion: Those who master it, paint with food color, work in structures such as scratches or a leather look or give the surface a shine.

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Afraid advises beginners who want to try their hand at sculptural baking not to start blind: “You really have to deal with that in advance,” the expert emphasizes. Videos, tutorials or books are useful. “Often it is the little things you learn that make baking much easier. For example, fondant sticks very strongly to your hands. A little trick helps here: lubricate your hands a little.”

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Accessories for theme cakes

Some basic equipment for motif cakes is required. These include a rolling pin, cutters, food coloring to color the fondant and baking starch to prevent it from sticking. For starters, cake designer Bange recommends covering a normal cake with fondant first. For decoration, it is enough to cut out some flowers or hearts with a form and place them on the cake.

There are hardly any upper limits: “I work about 30 hours on very complex projects, such as a cake with many Disney characters.” It’s actually a shame if it’s eaten up in just a few minutes for a party. But baked goods are also for eating – and not for the museum.

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