When I heard that Stan was retiring, I knew I had to make a cake! I had the privilege to work with/for Stan for a few years and I wanted to pay tribute to his great career teaching physics and being Chair of Pure and Applied Sciences as best I could. What I know about physics would fit in a thimble though...
I started by reading through university level physics course outlines trying to narrow down the topics that could be "visual". Stan teaches astronomy so I decided very early on that the topper had to be a planet. I've done planets before but adding the rings was a new touch. A touch that was more complicated than I had expected and it took a few tries! I later decided to add radioactivity and light refraction as the other elements. I left the fondant on the cake board black to mimic a chalk board and did white letter to make it look like it had been written with chalk. The apple and ruler were added to pay tribute to "teaching" in general.
The cake layers are peppermint cake filled with cream cheese Italian meringue buttercream. I think the light refraction bottom tier is my favorite part of the cake but overall I am really happy with how it turned out.
Here's hoping that retirement will be fantastic for one of my favorite people I have ever worked with! All the best, Stan!
This blog will follow my adventures with cake, pastry and all things sweet!