If you’ve been tasked with making an under the sea themed cake and don’t know where to start, this tutorial will help you make some of the beautiful fish you might find in the ocean! The difference is that these little guys are made from sugarpaste so not only do they look sweet, they’ll taste sweet, too! There are two tutorials that will show you how to make a variety of sea creatures, this one will cover starfish and clownfish and our alternative tutorial will show you how to make a crab and octopus. This tutorial would be particularly useful for anyone wanting to make a Disney Pixar ‘Finding Nemo’ inspired cake! Either way these colourful cake toppers are sure to bring your ocean creations to life. Let’s get started.
You Will Need
- Fuchsia Sugarpaste
- Tiger Orange Sugarpaste
- White Sugarpaste
- Small Star Cutter
- Sugar Eyeballs
- Scallop Modelling Tool
- Shell Modelling Tool
- Black Paste Colour
- Very Small Size 0 Sable Brush
- Edible Glue
- Palette Knife
- Styrofoam Block
- Cocktail Stick
- Kitchen Roll
Step By Step in Pictures
Before you start to model your cake toppers, add a little gum tragacanth to your sugarpaste and then store the sugarpaste in an air-tight container so that it doesn’t dry out. This will ensure your cake toppers set hard and retain their shape.
1. Take a piece of fuchsia sugarpaste and roll it into a small ball. Roll out the sugarpaste until it is approximately 3mm thick. You need to make sure that this is rolled to a thick enough consistency, as you want your starfish to have a bit of body to it.
2. Using the star shaped cutter, press down firmly into the sugarpaste to cut out a perfect star shape for modelling.
3. To make your star fish look more realistic, take the ‘legs’ of the star and using your fingers smooth out the edges and bend them slightly.
4. Next you have the option to give your starfish a characterised look. You can do this by wetting a pair of ready-made sugar eyes with edible glue (or water if you have no glue) and stick them onto the starfish.
5. To finish off your starfish character, you will need to give it a mouth. To create a smiley face, simply take your scallop and comb tool and place the curved edge directly underneath the sugar eyes. Press firmly to create a groove approx 1mm deep. To create a straight mouth, position the flat tip of the spatula a few millimetres below the sugar eyes, and again press firmly into the sugarpaste, taking care not to pierce too far through.
6. Take a piece of orange sugarpaste (about the size of a walnut) and roll it into a ball. Then gently roll one end between two fingers to create a ‘fat lollipop’ shape, with one end larger than the other. Gently squash the smaller end with your fingers to create a tail. The fatter end will form the body. Take a Shell Tool and firmly press down on each side of the tail. Set aside while you make the fins.
7. Take 2 small balls of orange sugarpaste and gently flatten with your finger to create the side fins. To make the top fin, roll a small sausage (half the length of the body/tail piece) and gently roll the centre of the sausage to make the ends bulge. Gently flatten the ends to create a figure 8 shape. Using the shell tool, press into both ends. Repeat this on the opposite side.
8. Next, take your white sugarpaste and roll it out to approximately 1mm thick. Cut out 2 long, thin rectangles and glue them onto the fish body, with Edible Glue or water, to create a stripy effect.
9. Insert a piece of spaghetti or cocktail stick into a styrofoam block and place your fish body/tail onto it. You may find it useful to create a little kitchen paper ‘security blanket’ under the fish to stop the cocktail stick from going straight through the fish! Having the fish suspended makes assembling the pieces a lot easier.
10. Take a very fine paintbrush and paint a thin black line alongside each of the white stripes using the black Sugarflair Paste. Leave to dry.
11. Attach the side fins and top fins with a little edible glue. Allow it to dry for a few minutes. Then paint on black details to the fins (using the same method you used with the white stripes).
12. Next we want to give the clownfish a face. Take two edible eyes and glue them onto the fish. Lastly, using the scallop and comb tool, take the scalloped edge and firmly press it into the sugarpaste just below the eyes to form a smile.
Now you’ve made your starfish and clownfish cake toppers, why not follow our cake tutorial to bring your ocean or Finding Nemo cakes to life? You could try out our octopus and crab tutorial, or why not add even more detail and make some seaweed and shells or coral and sponges? Super easy to make yet look impressive!