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Checkerboard Spider Cake

Checkerboard Spider Cake, Lay The Table I was all set to make a checkerboard candy corn cake in white, yellow and orange (of course!), but changed direction at the last minute.

I wanted to make a cute spider.  Mind you, I do not like spiders, so all the more reason to personify one by giving it a sweet face and friendly smile:)  The day I made this cake there was an article in the newspaper that mentioned tarantulas…how timely is that? The article stated that tarantulas are harmless and in the warm days of autumn head from the hills seeking mates. I also researched a bit online and found out that the life span of a tarantula is 25-40 years! Who knew?!?

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Checkerboard Spider Cake, Lay The Table Though far from being technically correct, this spider does remind me of a tarantula, maybe because he’s big. I should have given him hairy legs too! I opted for a green and purple checkerboard, though wish I had added more gel coloring so that the colors had turned out deeper shades of purple and green.  Still, I like it. Mmmm, I wish I had noticed that I hadn’t wiped up the cake stand. Checkerboard Spider Cake, Lay The Table Try to ignore the mess please, and just notice the checkerboard pattern and the colors:)
Checkerboard Spider Cake, Lay The Table This is the cake pan kit that I used to achieve the checkerboard pattern. It comes with three 8-inch pans, an insert-a piece broke off (which is placed in each pan before the batter is poured in and then removed before baking), and directions.  The two cake layers that are the same were the top and bottom layer, and the other was in the middle.
Checkerboard Spider Cake, Lay The Table The cakes were made from two boxes of white cake mix (don’t judge, haha), color added, but the buttercream was homemade. It was a thick buttercream that was made using half butter and half shortening (again, don’t judge:)). The shortening helped the frosting hold its shape, and kept the “hairy” spider, hairy.To ensure that the spider stayed round when I piped him on, I used a 4-inch, round cutter to make an impression on the top of the cake which was very helpful! I piped over the circle with an icing bag of black frosting and a #3 tip.  Checkerboard Spider Cake, Lay The Table I piped the body of the spider with a #233 grass tip.  The legs, smile and pupils were piped on with a #3 tip and the whites of the eyes with a #10 tip. The multi-colored border dots were also piped with a #3 tip. The bottom border of the cake was decorated with jumbo confetti sprinkles.
Checkerboard Spider Cake, Lay The Table Notice that I wiped up the cake pan:) After I took the initial photos I decided I wanted a female spider, so piped on a little bow with a flower sprinkle.  Even though part of her face is missing, isn’t she cute? This spider is very easy to make and would add some non-spooky sweetness to any Halloween cake.

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You may want to purchase your own checkerboard pan set and have some fun! I used it to make a candy corn cheesecake last year.  Without the pan, different colored (or swirled) cake layers could be baked.

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