My best friend Sue and I both share a love for Hello Kitty, so I wanted to make her some sort of Hello Kitty cake for her birthday this year. Last year I made her this cake inspired by Boston cream pie, and while I thought it looked pretty, it didn't live up to my expectations in the taste department. So this year I wanted to make her something that tasted great, and since I know she loved my triple chocolate mousse cake, I decided to make her a Hello Kitty triple chocolate mousse cake!
I've made this triple chocolate mousse cake many times already, so I thought it would be a breeze to make in Hello Kitty form, but from the very first step my cake ran into complications! My first mistake - for the bottom layer, I baked an 8-inch cake using my favorite chocolate cake recipe from Ina Garten. I wanted to use the same technique I used for my Hello Kitty tiramisu cake, by cutting out and fitting the cake into a Hello Kitty shaped mold. But after the cake was baked and cooled, I went to cut out my Hello Kitty shape, and realized that the cake was too small - I should have used my 9-inch cake pan! Doh!
But it was late at night already and didn't have time to bake a whole new cake, so instead I just cut out the main part of Hello Kitty's face with the majority of the cake, and then with the scraps I cut out the shape of the ears and bow. Then I fit them into the mold, hoping the mousse that would go on top would end up holding the cake in place.
Then came my second mistake - I made the chocolate mousse for the middle layer using the recipe from my copy of America's Test Kitchen "Complete TV Show Cookbook", but for some reason when it was time to fold in the whipped cream into my chocolate mixture, the chocolate seized up and turned the mousse into a lumpy chocolaty mess instead. This had never happened to me before! So I had to start all over with another batch of the chocolate mousse.
Right after that came my third mistake - after filling the mold with my layer of chocolate mousse, I picked up the cake so that I could put it in the fridge to set. But instead of picking it up by the cake board on the bottom like I should have, I picked it up by holding on to the mold. Before I knew it, the mold slid right off of the cake, and since the mousse was still soft and hadn't set yet, everything came oozing out over the sides of the bottom cake layer. I screamed out loud and immediately fit the mold back on, but it was too late. I knew at this point I would not have clean layers.
The top layer of white chocolate mousse didn't have any major mistakes surprisingly, except that my white chocolate mixture was a bit too warm when I folded in the freshly whipped cream, so the resulting mousse was a bit too runny. But after it set in the fridge you couldn't tell, other than the fact that the layer wasn't as tall as it should have been. At this point it was 2am so I went to bed, hoping that the string of mistakes would not follow me into the next day!
In the morning, I started my day by unmolding the cake, and then decorating the top of the cake. I didn't want to simply use cocoa powder like I did for the tiramisu cake, so my husband came up with the awesome idea to use silver dragees instead. He got the idea from a shirt that our daughter wears quite often, which is bedazzled with little studs to form the shape of Hello Kitty.
On a side note, I find it crazy that it is illegal to sell silver dragees in California! Yet, you can buy them in every other state in the country. Online stores that sell silver dragees won't even ship to you if you are in California. Because of this, the only silver dragees that I have are the ones my husband bought for me while visiting his parents in Hawaii last year.
That said, it would probably be illegal to sell this cake in California! Because it is decorated with lots and lots of silver dragees.
In the end, despite all of the blunders while making the cake, I still loved the end result. Of course the layers didn't look as clean as I would have liked, but seeing Hello Kitty light up and sparkle through silver dragees brought a smile to my face.