Our friend Jackie is one of our biggest supporters and best customers. We’ve made three cakes for her so far (though technically her bridal shower cake was requested by her bridesmaids), including one for her recent “bioluminescent birthday” bash. Her party was full of great food, great friends and, of course, lots of neon and glow-in-the-dark decorations.
We decided to take this opportunity to learn how to make sculpted sugar, so we could create a translucent jellyfish cake topper and make it light up. We had purchased a little battery-operated spherical light for another cake we made (which somehow has yet to be posted anywhere…will get on that) and were thrilled to be able to reuse it for Jackie’s.
Though it might seem complicated on the surface, sugar work actually isn’t that difficult to execute—it’s just REALLY easy to screw up. Once the sugar mixture gets up to temperature, it can go from perfect to burnt and unusable in a matter of seconds. Luckily, I’d already learned this lesson the hard way on a previous sugar work project, so this batch turned out great. The full tutorial we used can be found on Craftsy.com. Quick note: If you want to try this, PLEASE invest in a proper candy thermometer! It makes the whole process a lot easier to manage (and they’re only like, $10).
We made a mold out of a small bowl covered in paper towels and then aluminum foil, and coated the outer foil layer with cooking spray before pouring the hot sugar mixture on in. This was definitely a two-person job, because with 3D sugar sculptures, you NEED to continually work the sugar over the mold with a silicone spatula to make sure it dries in the shape you want. Otherwise, it spills out everywhere. It also dries fairly quickly, so work fast!
Anyway, here’s the finished product. Shout out to Wilton for selling the perfect fondant mold for an ocean-themed cake!