Saturday, July 26, 2014

Super Fudge Brownies for Ian's 7th Birthday

This is a late post. Ian's birthday was last Sunday, 20th July
It's unfortunate that he fell sick on that very day. The plan to fulfil his birthday request (aside from presents!) had to be postponed

To share his cute requests: Ian - the car maniac, has asked to ride on London cab on his birthday. And to have lunch at Watami Japanese restaurant. Yes, he's one Japanese food lover
I found the first request is really cute I can't say no LOL
Now that he's much better, we'll do the belated plan on this coming weekend - which happens to be long weekend. Yeay! :)

One thing still done was to celebrate at home with his birthday cake - as usual, design requested by the birthday boy
This year, it was Minecraft! Gosh, this ever popular game, everything square
Until now I still can't see the fun of doing all that. Whenever he commented how cute the pig is, how nice the house is - I saw the screen and I saw nothing but colourful squares jumbled up together LOL

Anyway, request for birthday boy - who can say no?
So, I searched for Minecraft design and I found one which seemed like it's not so complicated. It's by Yoyomax

She had her own cake recipe to make which she claimed to be dense, not crumbly and yet yummy. Original recipe is from HERE She said it's perfect for cake sculpting. It's a simple recipe using cake mix
I was thinking to make the cake from the scratch. So I decided not to use her recipe but making super fudgy brownies. I assume it'd be sturdy enough for sculpting, too

Somehow, this brownies turned out not so fudgy, a little too dense - even though undoubtedly delicious and chocolaty. I'm pretty sure I have over baked it. Another downside was, it's really crumbly!
At the point when I did the sculpting, I regretted I didn't use Yoyomax's recipe
But I couldn't turn back the clock, so I just went ahead. Luckily, it's still doable :)

This cake design is not so difficult to follow. The only problem is to make sure every square is the same size. I had to do a lot of 'trimming' during the process :)

For the grass blocks, recipe for super fudge brownies, originally from Martha Stewart and seen at Doris' blog from Tested & Tasted as well as Ricke from Just Ordinary Kitchen

What you need:

120g unsalted butter
225g semi sweet chocolate chips / melt (I used 70% dark chocolate)
200g castor sugar (original recipe: 280g)
3 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
130g plain flour
30g cocoa powder
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
50g semi sweet chocolate chips

  1. Using double boil method, melt butter and chocolate, stir til melted and well mixed
  2. Add in sugar, stir for awhile and remove from fire. Set aside
  3. Preheat oven to 180degC
  4. Add eggs and vanilla, stir to mix
  5. Add in sifted flour, cocoa powder, baking powder, salt, and chocolate chips, mix until just moistened (do not overmix)
  6. Transfer batter to greased or lined 20cm square pan, smooth the top
  7. Bake til cooked when there are moist crumbs on the skewer (mine was baked for 45mins and I think it's still overbaked - there were only little dry crumbs on the skewer, original recipe is 50mins)
  8. Let cool in the pan for 30mins before unmoulding

Just to share the recipe recommended by yoyomax for cake sculpting (this will be my reference also if the next time I decide to bake this cake)

What you need:

1 chocolate cake mix (I used Betty Crocker Super Food Devil's food chocolate cake mix)
1 package Jell-o chocolate pudding mix (113g - 4 serving size)
4 egg whites
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup plus two tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup sour cream

  1. Put all the ingredients in a large bowl and mix using electric mixer on low until combined and then on medium/high for two minutes more.  Scrape the sides and the bottom of the bowl to make sure all ingredients get incorporated. Batter will be very thick
  2. Pour batter into a well greased 9x13 inch pan (or whatever size pan you need to get the thickness of blocks you need)
  3. Bake in a preheated oven at 180degC for 25-30 minutes until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean (or with only a few moist crumbs and the center springs back slightly when pressed)
  4. Let cool in pan for a few minutes and then turn out onto cooling rack

The recipe for water blocks:
(I made only 1/4 recipe)

4 85g packages of jell-o (blue) and that made enough for about 8- 2x2" blocks of "water"
Don't follow package directions, only mix one cup of boiling water for each package of jell-o (instead of 2). Better to put the jell-o into a deep container (like a loaf pan) to make sure that your block are big enough

For the sand blocks, below is the recipe. Make sure you make it thick enough to get the size block you need
What you need:
  1. 6 cups rice krispies cereal
  2. 40 large marshmallows
  3. 3 tbsp butter
  1. Melt butter and marshmallows in a large pot on low heat
  2. Once melted, add the cereal and stir until coated
  3. Press mixture into a greased pan

For buttercream, I just followed her recipe but I reduced the sugar used

What you need:
(1 batch frosts a 2-layer, 13 x 9-inch cake or about 2 doz cupcakes)
  1. 2/3 cup butter -- softened
  2. 4 cups powdered sugar (mine was 2 cups and it's still a tad too sweet for me)
  3. 1 tsp vanilla
  4. 4 tbsp cream or milk
  1. In a bowl, beat butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating well
  2. Beat in vanilla and enough cream or milk until desired spreading consistency. Beat the mixture for at least 5mins and it should lighten in colour and get very light and fluffy
  3. Tint the frosting using green paste food colour

For the cake arrangement, I followed how yoyomax did
I 'glued' the grass blocks using buttercream instead of skewer
Paper figurine was done by DH, it's not easy to fold and glue those tiny papercuts
The characters chosen by Ian. It took us more than 2 hours to finish!
(and it's only put to use for less than 15 minutes LOL)

As usual, efforts is nothing but worth it when it comes to make birthday cake. The happy smile and thrilled scream heard, and it's paid off :)
(so difficult to make him smile whenever taking picture, he always likes to act cool LOL)


  1. That is really a beautiful piece of artwork Alice! It just shows the love of a mother to her family. Wish Ian a happy 7th birthday!

  2. whoaah! that's sure a lot of work here..and looking terrific.. the sand and water blocks look cool...and the grass sands must be delicious too, you are s super mom ! if ask me to do this, i will surrender :D

    1. thks Lena :)
      actually, its not too difficult :)

  3. Happy Belated Birthday to Ian! He is a handsome boy!
    Your cake is really beautiful! You are so patient assembling the cake. Thumbs up for your superb work!



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