While I was searching for some new ideas to decorate for spring (an exciting season that signifies warmer weather coming to New England!), I came across this idea to convert a Lighthouse Rum Cake into a bird nest and absolutely fell in love with it. As I was purchasing the supplies, I began to wonder if I was getting in over my head. I’m someone who enjoys stenciling and painting by numbers…. art projects that are guaranteed to come out awesome and “wow” the crowd. I am very selective on my “art” projects. But as I started this project, it turned out to be very simple and took less than an hour. When I brought it to a family event, it was the talk of the party! People loved the way it looked and especially how it tasted.
Medium or Large Lighthouse Rum Cake
M&M’s or Cadbury mini-eggs
small Bird (see directions below)
Piping tip (#2)
I started with a medium size Lighthouse Rum Cake. I chose to use a coconut flavor because that is my favorite! But chocolate or original would work just as well. This project looks the best on either a medium or large size Lighthouse Rum Cake. It would be tricky to get all the detail onto the small cake.
To keep it simple, I purchased a pre-made Buttercream frosting at the grocery store. I then melted a 1/2 cup of milk chocolate chips and combined it with the frosting to make a chocolate buttercream. To melt the chocolate, microwave for 1 minute, stir, and then 10 additional seconds, stir and repeat until the chocolate is smooth. I frosted it with a regular butter knife. It doesn’t have to be perfect because its suppose to look like a bird’s nest, which can be any shape or texture.
For the “twigs” I filled a piping bag with the milk chocolate buttercream frosting. I added more melted chocolate to make the color slightly darker. You can use a drop of brown food coloring as well. I also used a #2 tip. Begin drawing lines in various directions and various lengths, starting in the middle of the cake.
As you start drawing on the top and sides, work in 3 inch segments and move around the cake in sections. This keeps the look consistent. Again, it does not take as long as you would think. Just be patient and have fun!
For the final touches, I used M&M’s for the eggs, Cadbury mini eggs would work well too. And I purchased a small bird from the arts and crafts store. If you are good with fondant, you can also make an edible one.
Almost too good-looking to cut in to. But believe me, your guest will be happy that you did!
I removed the bird and candy and stored the cake in the refrigerator for a day before the party. Wrap it well to maintain the cake’s moisture.