Special equipment: Pumpkin-size styrofoam sphere Cardboard base 1 (8 to 9-inch) cardboard cake round (slightly smaller than the cake.) Knife Spatula Plastic wrap Cake stand Rolling pin Wooden rod Clay tool Airbrush* Small sharp knife or exacto knife Duster brush Small round circular cutters
Cut the styrofoam sphere in half and glue it to a the cardboard base. Put the cardboard round on top of the sphere.
Take piece of plastic wrap and put it over the half sphere and cardboard, ensuring that none of the styrofoam touches any of the cake.
Grease the top and side of the half sphere with shortening. Wrap the greased half sphere with plastic wrap. Add a little more shortening to the plastic wrap.
Put the cardboard cake round on flat top of plastic wrap.
Add 1 cake round to the styrofoam sphere, cutting off a bit of the top. Frost the top of the first cake round with buttercream. Add second cake round and cut off a bit of the top. Frost the top of the second cake round with buttercream. Top with the third cake round.
Begin carving the cake, slowly carving it down until it's the shape of a sphere. When close to the shape of sphere, start carving away some of the hard edges. Make sure the bottom edge of the cakes line up with the styrofoam sphere half. If your sphere is too tall, cut off some of the top. Exfoliate the cake, peeling off excess crumbs until you get a nice gradual curve. Discard excess cake.
Transfer the cake/sphere to a round cake stand.
Frost the cake and plastic covering the styrofoam using an offset spatula, pressing relatively firmly. Remove the excess buttercream. Put the cake into the refrigerator to let the buttercream harden.
When the buttercream is hard remove the cake from the refrigerator and set aside.
Dust a workspace with cornstarch. Using a rolling pin, flatten the orange fondant into a large round big enough to cover the cake/sphere.
Wrap the fondant over the rolling pin or a wooden rod. Brush the excess starch off the fondant with a towel.
Unravel the fondant over the sphere to cover it. By hand smooth out the wrinkles on orange fondant. Cut off the excess fondant at the base of the sphere. Smooth out the fondant.
Using the clay tool, draw in pumpkin lines in the orange fondant covering. Run over lines with your finger to make sure they are nice and prominent.
Roll out dark brown and light brown fondant for vine to wrap around sphere. Wrap the vine around base of the sphere. Push vine up to cover the broken parts of the orange fondant. Roll out extra orange fondant. Use water to attach it to the orange sphere, covering the holes you have in the orange fondant.
Roll out more fondant, and place on base of sphere
Roll out more dark brown and light brown fondant. Twist the dark and light brown fondant together until it starts to tear. Reserve for the base of the pumpkin.
Fill the airbrush with red orange food coloring, and spray the creased sections of fondant first, then the entire cake. Rinse out the airbrush.
Add the gum paste leaves to the base of the cake.
Before you make the pumpkin's face, decide which side is going to be the front.
Get out a nice sharp blade and a duster brush.
Roll out enough black fondant to make the face, using cornstarch so fondant does not stick to work area. Brush excess cornstarch off the rolled out fondant.
Use a knife to cut out the shape of the pumpkin's grin and eyes. Cut out teeth for pumpkin's grin. Use water to attach the grin to the pumpkin. Brush off the grin once it is attached to the cake.
Use small round cutters to cut out "eyes" from fondant eyes of the pumpkin. Attach eyes to cake and brush off eyes.
From the pieces you cut out from the eyes, use a larger round cutter to cut out crescent moons. Attach the moons to the top of the eyes as the eyebrows, and brush off the eyebrows.
Arrange the reserved fondant twists on the base of the pumpkin.
Take the empty airbrush and blow out some of the extra cornstarch onto the pumpkin for the effect.
Duff uses a French rolling pin * you can buy airbrushes at a craft store, cake supply store, or an art supply store. Cheapest is at the craft store. At art supply stores you can get the top of the line, iawata brand airbrush but it's cheaper to get one that uses canned air rather than compressed air, if you'll be using it just a few times a year. Duff suggested the best one is a brand called badger. Cake stores have a brand that's called "kopykake" that is also easy to use. This recipe was provided by professional chefs and has been scaled down from a bulk recipe provided by a restaurant. The Food Network Kitchens chefs have not tested this recipe, in the proportions indicated, and therefore, we cannot make any representation as to the results.
Recipe courtesy of Duff Goldman, Charm City Cakes, Baltimore Maryland