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You are here: Recipes > Surf Cake

Surf Cake

Learn how to make a surfing and beach themed birthday cake with ready to roll fondant icing. One half of the cake is the sandy beach and one half is the sea.

Recipe by Wendy Davis

Uploaded by

Time to make

Skill Level



12 people

Baking ingredients

  • 10 oz caster sugar
  • 10 oz butter
  • 10 oz self-raising flour
  • 5 eggs
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract or paste
  • 100 g soft cheese (Philly)
  • 50 g butter
  • 300 g icing sugar

Decorating ingredients

  • 1 kg Renshaw White Ready to Roll Icing
  • Blue food gel
  • Yellow food gel
  • Orange food gel
  • Light brown sugar
  • 400 g Renshaw White Royal Icing


Preparing the sponge:

Step 1

Preheat oven to 180°C and grease two 8 inch spring form cake tins with butter.

Step 2

Cream together the butter and caster sugar ensuring the butter is at room temperature first (zap in the microwave for 30 seconds first if butter is straight from the fridge).

Step 3

Add the eggs to the mix one at a time until they are all combined well.

Step 4

Add the flour, baking powder and vanilla essence/paste and mix but only until combined.

Step 5

Put half the mix in each cake tin, smooth top roughly with a knife or back of a spoon.

Step 6

Bake in the oven for approx 30 minutes or until a skewer through the centre of the cake comes out clean.

Step 7

Once the cake has cooled, slice the tops off so the halves are flat. Add jam in the middle and then cover the top and sides in a thin layer of buttercream. My favourite buttercream/frosting recipe is 600g of icing sugar, 200g full fat soft cheese, 1 tsp of vanilla essence and 100g of room temp butter. This creates icing that isn't too sickly and really smooth. There will be plenty left for topping some cupcakes!

Step 8

Place cake on a cake board and then place in the fridge for 30 mins to harden slightly. Put a blob of buttercream in the cake board first to stop the cake moving around.

Decorating the cake:

Step 9

Knead 900g of fondant icing and add yellow food colouring to one half and blue to the other. I use two pencils either side of the icing and then roll the rolling pin over the top and this gives perfectly even thickness of icing. Well kneaded icing creates less cracks, also use cornflower on the rolling pin and surface to stop it sticking. (Alternatively you could use Baby Blue and Teddy Bear Brown Ready to Roll Icing.)

Step 10

Cover half the cake in yellow icing and half the cake in blue icing. Use a cake smoother if you have one to give a good smooth finish. Cover the cake board at the same time rather than separately, this saves time and icing!

Step 11

Along the join between the two colours use white royal icing to create a wave effect.

Step 12

Wet parts of the yellow icing with cooled boiled water and cover patches with light brown sugar for a sand effect.

Step 13

Use shell shape silicone mounds with yellow, orange, white and brown icing to create icing shells for the beach side of the cake.

Step 14

To make a surf board add a teaspoon of tylo powder to 100g of fondant icing, knead for a minute then roll out thinly and cut out the top half of a surf board shape and leave to harden overnight. It's worth making a spare board to cover any breakages. Wrap any spare mix in cling film straight away as it hardens quickly.

Step 15

Once dry, cut a slit in the cake where the surf board will go and then slide the surf board in. Paint a pattern on the board with food colouring to liven it up and add detail.

Step 16

Make letters or numbers for a birthday message with leftover fondant/tylo mix. I find tappit cutters easy to use. Add letters to the cake using boiled water as glue. Voila, a special cake for a special occasion!