Brett loves coins. He can sit for hours on end looking at coins whether in hand or in pictures online. So for his birthday cake I thought I would do a replica of one of the coins he admires.
It is called a Fugio Cent and Ben Franklin helped come up with the sayings for the coin. Anyway, it says fugio, which means “I fly” in Latin and is accompanied by a sundial. Get it? Time flies! This also seemed appropriate for a birthday cake. Now I was not about to try and draw a sundial with icing so I opted for the other side of the coin that has 13 rings to symbolize the 13 colonies. When I was conceptualizing this I knew it would come down to getting the right color, and being able to execute the rings well. Neither of which is a guarantee.
Yesterday was one of those, “Where is my brain?!” days. The first thing related to cooking (there were a few unrelated moments throughout the day) was when we were leaving for the store and I almost forgot to put powdered sugar on the list, then when I was making my frosting I realized that I didn’t have enough vanilla for the recipe. To compensate for the lack of vanilla I wrongly went a little shy on the milk at the end when I should have gone a little heavy. Oops. The icing was very thick and hard to make smooth. It also took a lot of elbow grease to attain the right color. I mixed brown, orange, and a tiny bit of red. I was going for a copper color and am pretty pleased with the result.
I tried a new tool out to make the ridges on the edge of the coin/cake. The frosting was way to thick for this to look nice, but you get the general idea. Next time I use it, I will make sure that the frosting is thinner. I then darkened the remaining frosting and got to work on piping. I made the rings around the cake using a 1/8 cup measuring cup and the circle in the middle was made with the rim of a drinking glass. I just traced over the lines with the smooth side of my basket weave tip. It was not going smoothly and was impossible to do in one continuous stream and it didn’t look how I wanted it to. About halfway through the rings I took all of the icing out of the bag and tried to thin it out with a splash of milk which did help slightly, but it still didn’t go how I envisioned.
Then as I was doing the writing in a very confined space I was amazed that birthday was going to fit better than I had imagined. Then I realized that I had written “Birtday.” Oops! Luckily the first layer of frosting had dried up a little and I was able to scrape the last couple of letters off without ruining anything. I still got birthday to fit although it was quite tight.
For finishing touches I did a large shell pattern around the bottom edge, and a small shell pattern around the top edge. Then I called it a night. Brett was pleased with the effort and happy to get a Fugio coin in any form. Not the prettiest cake I’ve ever done, but I’m still happy with it. It’s certainly unique!