Food and Fandom: Bioshock Infinite

Give me Bioshock Infinite or give me cake! Or preferably, give me both in resplendent glory!

Last week, I had gone through a crash course on fondant work. This may not seem like a big deal, but for someone usually on a budget when it comes to buying food, using fondant seemed the right choice to go about building a cake for my sister’s birthday. This seems like an odd choice, seeing as a baking hobbyist, I’ve had more experience with buttercream icing, but trust me, working with fondant ends up being much neater. The problems with buying store-bought fondant, however, are that the ready-made versions are almost three times the price of making the fondant yourself, and it’s not exactly very tasty either.

Luckily, I had some help on the taste department (yay for pastry chefs!). I only really needed confectioner’s sugar and marshmallow fluff, so I was on my way to making this cake!

Making your own fondant is a grueling workout, no mere feat for the weak. I’m pretty sure I sprouted a muscle somewhere along the way, stirring and kneading this sucker.

Now, my sister and I are practically gamers on a certain level (granted, she’s much more gung-ho about games than I). One of the games we absolutely loved this year was Bioshock Infinite. So I thought since she’d been awesome enough to make me a One Piece pirate ship cake, I thought something game or fandom-related would be great. After scrapping the first idea (which involved too much edible painting work and precision), I’d decided to gain inspiration from two of the best characters in the game.

My thoughts seriously went along the lines of: “Oooh! Let’s pimp out the chalkboard!”

And thus I began my journey through cake decorating.

Great big note: Work with refrigerated cake. Usually this means keeping it in the fridge for a few hours or overnight. Otherwise, you end up with cake that gets stuck, or is too fragile, etc.

I would like to mention at this point that even after all that measuring to ensure that the cake was cut in equal rectangles, one of my rectangles broke in half. In. Half. Do you know how devastating that is?! Suffice to say I had icing handy, so I “glued” the broken parts together and stuck them at the bottom of the damn workboard.

My pastry chef friend told me that to get more solid colors, it’s better to put the color in once the marshmallows have melted. I didn’t listen and ended up with a marble cake look. Oh well.

Then I threw a semi-bitch fit when I realized that my cake wasn’t turning BLACK, and was adamantly maintaining some grayish-purple marble tinge. At some point I just gave up on trying to add more food coloring, put the fondant on the cake, and began forming it around the rectangles.

Much to my delight, the grayish-purple goopy color appeared to look darker once I put in its contrasting border!

Gluing the edges in wasn’t particularly difficult. I just had to make sure I had enough white fondant put aside for it, which I did. I did forget my original plan for the rectangles, though, so it came out a bit sloppier than what I had imagined, but there it is.

Prototype coins!

And then for the coins! Note: I didn’t use the ones above, since I actually cut out more “coin” fondant than I intended.

Some detail-work here, a little stenciling there, a bit of rustic gold dusting…voila!

With the leftover frosting, I dabbed the cake a bit with the “Heads/Tails” text, varying the numbers (because I got clever, hee), and stuck the coins at the bottom so it wasn’t just a plain chalkboard. The entire border, plus the coins, got a “gold dust” treatment. Canonically speaking, the coins should have been “silver dollars”, but for aesthetic’s sake (and the fact that I did not have silver dust lying around), I stuck with gold.

You’d think that it’s over, right? WRONG.

Found the bottles at A.C. Moore, but the labels I printed out and colored.

It was time to put the finishing touches on the cake: the infusions, also another Bioshock Infinite element. In the game, there are three types of infusions: blue for salts/mana, red for health, and yellow for shield. All of them have the “L” stencil to stand for “Lutece,” but I changed up the fourth bottle by putting in a “V” instead.

And I filled them up!

The infusions may or may not have been a mixture of vodka and sprite/seltzer. Just sayin’.



And there you have it! Cake and Bioshock Infinite. What more can any geek ask for?


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