I hope to get a better picture tomorrow when there is sunlight, but for now, this will have to do. I made a Super Bowl XLV cake the same way that I made the puppy cake: frozen buttercream transfer.
To review, to make the buttercream transfer, you pipe the design in reverse on a sheet of waxed paper and then freeze it:
I spread a layer of frosting over the above design (green frosting over everything but the football, and then white frosting over the football). Then I lay a sheet of waxed paper over that and froze it.
Meanwhile, I made a batch of Zoe’s chocolate cake in a 9×13 pan. Then, I crumb coated the cake with white frosting and refrigerated it. I gave another skim coat of frosting before inverting the buttercream transfer onto the cake. To get the sides green, I piped green frosting over the white using a basket weave tip and then smoothed everything with an offset spatula and a plastic scraper.
Originally, I had a more ambitious plan for this cake, including a cookies ‘n cream mousse filling. My mother talked me out of that. Sticking to the idea of quitting while I am still ahead, I have not followed through on my initial plans to pipe a chocolate border around the base.
I feel comfortable with this method, but it has its limitations (unless I just need to work on my technique). I find that the buttercream is not completely smooth, and I am not too keen about there being texture. Designs are not always as crisp as I would like. And the piping is really tedious for large designs. I got wrinkles in my design, and I think that was because the buttercream defrosted before I flipped it. It has to be rock hard and you have to move fast. When I made the puppy, the design stayed rigid when I moved it, but the football design got soft and sagged as I was transferring it.
On the other had, there is no dealing with fondant, which has a taste that turns some people off.