I love Halloween, it's my number one holiday, followed by Christmas, then Valentines Day.
I've passed my love for all things Halloween-y to my son, and on his fourth birthday I made him a chilled monkey brain cake for our Indiana Jones themed dinner (which also included real dried crickets at his request!). I didn't think much of it until a friend of mine, with a shocked look on her face, said "wow, he's pretty advanced for his age"... I took notice of all the Paw Patrol-Mickey Mouse b-day cakes that the other 4 year olds had, and thought maybe i'll dial it back next year!
Or maybe not!
I love to cook, and you know what they say about good cooks..... they can't bake!
I like to throw a dash of this, an extra cup of that (mainly wine) into all my dishes, my brain does not compute exact measurements. Baking is not my forte, but I wanted to do something special for our yearly mommy & son v-day dinner date. And because my kid has half my genes, something special = something gory and/or disgusting.
What better than an anatomically correct heart cake?!
I called some local bakeries, thinking naturally I couldn't be the only one wanting such a thing for Valentines day....but I was.... straight to youtube I went and searched for bloody heart cake videos.
I found a great tutorial on HowToCakeIt.com, but me being me, I wasn't going to go out and buy all the extra tools and I certainly wasn't going to make homemade ganache for the filling. I'm not that ambitious, so this is my simplified version of the Anatomical Heart Cake. You can find the original in the link at the end of the post
I used a box of Betty Crocker Super Moist Red Velvet cake mix, with a 1/3 of a cup of Amaretto, because why the hell not, and filled each dome about one quarter of the way. Baked at 350, for aprox 22 minutes.
I let the domes chill in the fridge, while I prepped the fondant.
Once the cakes were cooled all the way through, I used Betty Crocker ButterCream frosting to sandwich them together, then started carving the heart. Sloppy AF but thats my way.
I crumb coated the heart before adding my veins.
You want to make the veins thick enough so they give texture to the heart after you place the next layer of fondant over them. My son did the red side..dunno if I should be proud or scared!
I mixed a small bit of red fondant into the white, to create a pink hue. Then smoothed it over the heart, pressing lightly around the veins. I used the extra fondant to roll tubes that would become the Aorta on top of the heart, and also added one or two more red veins to the outside for more texture.
In the original HowToCakeIt tutorial, she made congealed blood by using jelly and red food coloring. I used a mix of Bonne Maman cherry and blueberry preserves then added a few drops of food coloring to give it that super gross bloody membrane effect.
Et voila! How could anyone resist