Tuesday, March 6, 2012

a masterpiece classic

Season 2 of PBS's Downton Abbey may have finale'd here in the States, but the show lives on in cake form... until of course, even that has been devoured.

Downton Abbey (or Highclere Castle in real life) is the name of the estate where the show takes place, set in early 20th century England. The show follows the dramatic lives of an aristocratic family and their team of houseservants through events like the sinking of the Titanic and World War I.

I am a huge fan of the show, as is my roommate Alisa, so let's start construction:

Once I had the idea of doing Downton Abbey, there were several different ways to go about it. I could do something with the cast (but I'm pretty awful at faces), I could do some of the period decor, or I could focus on the architecture details of the house itself.

I ended up choosing to recreate a scene from the opening credits where the house appears against a bright blue sky and green landscape:

Layered a loaf cake on top of a 9x13 cake, used some cake scraps to build out the turrets (cardboard for the main tower so it could extend off the cake), then various layers and textures of frosting to create the background and the house.

The key crumb coat stage that makes all other decorating possible:

And my favorite: hot-knifing the icing so it goes from a preschool finger-painting to a high resolution watercolor:

I think even the Dowager Countess would approve!

Happy Birthday Alisa!


  1. WOW!....awesome! must be yummy :D
    soon there will be the S04, and i just started watching it from the S01E01 in marathon mode..haha.