Laura Miller of Sugar and Spice cakes is something of a Guardians of the Galaxy fan, having sculpted a Baby Groot when the first instalment of the smash-hit movie came out in 2014. To celebrate the latest chapter of Star-Lord and his chums’ galavanting galactic adventure, she made a life size Rocket Raccoon for Cakes International’s exhibition. We caught up with her and found out what it takes to be a cake sculptor.
How to make a Rocket Raccoon
Culture Trip: How did you get into baking?
Laura Miller: The way most women do; since having my children, I started making birthday and wedding cakes and fell into it that way. Friends of friends kept asking for them and things grew. I didn’t go back into goldsmithing – having a workshop at home wouldn’t be safe – and children can’t really hurt themselves on cake! I found I preferred doing sculptured cakes rather than straight ‘baking’ – it’s a lot more fun. It’s nice to do a pretty wedding cake now and again but it’s not as creative really.
CT: What advice would you give to people who want to get into cake sculpture?
LM: Just practice, loads of it, on fake cakes first if possible as you will make a million mistakes. There are loads of great videos online – including mine – to give you more of an insight and advice. I also run small classes if people want to learn hands on.
CT: What are you working on at the moment?
LM: I’ve just finished the Rocket Raccoon cake for Cake International. It’s a touring cake exhibition and competition.
CT: What’s the biggest cake you’ve ever made?
LM: The Frozen one featuring Sven and Olaf was pretty big, as was the princess carriage. They were both about four feet in size, the carriage in length and the Frozen one in height.
CT: We first came across your work at The Cake & Bake show, where you exhibited a zombie mermaid cake which gave us nightmares! What was the thinking behind that?
LM: Ha! The theme was ‘with a twist’ and so I went a bit horrid with it! She lasted for three years.
CT: You’ve also made a dragon cake. What was that for?
LM: That was for Dragon’s Den! I appeared on the show seeking funding, but they over filmed, so it didn’t get shown. But they loved the cake – they’re all really nice off-camera.
CT: How do you make your cakes?
LM: I use chocolate mixed with golden syrup to make it malleable, but which then sets. It won’t go mouldy, it’ll just start to disintegrate.
CT: Which cake took the longest to make?
LM: The glass slipper, purely because of the painting on it – it took about five days. Rocky Raccoon took about 19 hours in total.
How to make a Baby Groot
Read our review of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 here.