I think it’s kinda funny that I am writing a Super Bowl post, because I have absolutely no interest in the Super Bowl. Not even this year, when the local team actually has a shot at the big game. The honest to goodness truth is that I could care less about football.
In fact, this cake has nothing to do with the Super Bowl. I actually made it for Tiger Cub’s second birthday a couple weeks ago, and am just now getting around to posting it, but I figured that was pretty good timing with the Super Bowl only a few weeks away. Around here, football fever is reaching an all-time high as the local fans get their hopes up, so it seems very fitting all around.
If, like me, the Super Bowl is not your thing, then perhaps you could find another use for this fun and simple cake. Maybe a child’s birthday? Father’s day? Little boy baby shower? Whatever the case, football is a fun theme and a super easy cake to make.
Trust me. I don’t do hard cakes. This is pretty much as easy as they come.
My standard birthday cake recipe hitherto has been one variation or another of the Wacky Cake because it doesn’t require eggs or butter. Up until recently, The Boys were allergic to those things, so I avoided them. My favorite version is the Mocha Wacky Cake - just double the baking time for this cake. If you prefer not to have a mocha flavor, just use water instead of the coffee.
But really, you can use whatever chocolate cake recipe you want. The more important thing is how you bake it.
To make the football shape:
Bake your cake recipe in 2 round pans.
When the cakes are removed from the pans and completely cooled, cut a 1″ wide strip out of the middle of each layer so that you have 4 half circles.
Slide two half circles together until they meet to form the bottom layer.
Frost the bottom layer liberally, then top with the remaining two half circles.
Voila! You have just made a football-shaped cake!
Told ya it was easy.
The frosting is also easy because you do not have to fool with food coloring. Because, as Matthew McConaughey said so eloquently in The Wedding Planner, “Chocolate’s already brown.” Simply add a tablespoon of cocoa powder to the frosting recipe found here (or use your own favorite chocolate frosting) after you reserve about 1/4 cup of frosting for the laces.
Cover the cake in a thin layer of frosting to seal in the crumbs. Allow it to set until it’s firm to the touch. Then fill a decorator’s bag with your frosting, fitted with a star tip. If you’ve never piped stars before, here’s a video I found that illustrates the process:
Pipe stars to cover the top of the cake. If you’re not into stars (although I think they give a nice professional finished look to the cake), just swirl the frosting on with a knife. You can frost the sides, too, if you want. I only didn’t because I was running out of time, but next time I probably would.
Once the football is covered with chocolate frosting, take the reserved plain frosting and place it in a decorator’s bag with the round tip. Pipe the lacing onto the top of the football.
Now you know I can’t bear for any food to go to waste. Remember those strips of cake cut out of the middle of the circles? There was no way I was going to throw away that deliciousness. Nope! I turned it into cake balls.
You can do the same: all you need is a little bit extra frosting and some chocolate chips to melt. Here’s the process.
Simply crumble the strips of cake into a bowl, then stir in frosting until you have a mixture that can be formed into balls. (You should get about a dozen.)
Place the balls on a cookie sheet and freeze until firm.
Melt 1 cup of chocolate chips with 1 TBSP of palm shortening (or other oil) over low heat until smooth.
Dip the frozen balls into the melted chocolate and then place on a sheet of wax paper to set.
If I’d had time, I would have experimented with piping helmet details onto the balls with white chocolate or frosting to turn them into little mini football helmets, but I ran out of time. If you give that a try, let me know! And take a picture so I can see. I think it would be super cute!
So there you have it… a super simple football cake for the Super Bowl, or your next birthday party. Fun and easy – I love it!