A Quick Study Cake
Cake serves 24.
In advance: Make head and mortarboard. Tint fondant: 12 oz. blue and 6 oz. light brown. Add 1/2 teaspoon Gum-Tex to 4 oz. blue and 3/4 teaspoon Gum-Tex to 6 oz. brown. Roll out 1/8 in. thick. Use patterns to cut out head and mortarboard. Set on cornstarch-dusted board to dry. Reserve remaining fondant.
Bake and cool Wonder Mold and 1-layer 9 in. round cakes using firm-textured batter such as pound cake. Stack cakes on stand.
Using a spatula, ice shirt area smooth; ice gown, running edge of spatula vertically over icing to form pleats. Using tip 6, outline and pipe in tie. Pat smooth.
Attach head to mortarboard using melted candy; let set.
Using melted candy, attach 3 lollipop sticks to back of head leaving 5 in. extended; let set, then insert into cake (trim sticks as needed to fit).
Pipe tip 3 outline eyes, pipe in mouth and swirl hair. Roll three 1/2 in. fondant balls, flatten slightly and attach for nose and cheeks using a damp brush.
For tassel and string, tint fondant yellow and roll out 1/8 in. thick. Cut a 2 1/2 x 1/4 in. strip for cord; cut a 3 x 1 1/2 in. rectangle for tassel. Fringe long side of rectangle, using knife to cut slits 1/8 in. apart to within 1/2 in. of top edge. Roll and smooth top for tassel.
For button, roll a 1/2 in. fondant ball and flatten. Attach button, cord and tassel using damp brush.
Roll 5 1/2 x 1 1/2 in. logs for arms; position on cake. Cut dowel rod to 6 1/2 in. long; with icing, attach between arms for diploma. Roll out fondant 1/8 in. thick; cut out hands using pattern (reverse for 2nd hand). Attach over diploma with icing.
For sleeve and neckline trim, roll out fondant 1/8 in. thick; cut 1/2 in. wide strips and attach using damp brush.
* Combine Lemon Yellow with Golden Yellow for yellow shown. Combine Brown with Red-Red for brown skin tone shown.
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