Hocus Pocus Spell Book Cake

Celebrate spooky season with a moist spiced pumpkin cake iced with tangy cinnamon cream cheese frosting. This cake is decorated with fondant to look like the iconic Spellbook from the classic Halloween movie “Hocus Pocus”

Makes 1 Hocus Pocus Book Cake

 

Things you'll need

Spiced Pumpkin Cake
  • 1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 1 cup canned unsweetened pumpkin puree
  • 2 large eggs
Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting
  • 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature
  • 1 stick (4 ounces) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 2 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Decorations
  • Fondant: brown, light brown, gray, black, blue and white
  • American buttercream
  • Brown royal icing
  • Corn starch
  • Corn syrup
  • Silver highlighter dust
  • Black petal dust
  • Confectioners glaze
  • Dark cocoa powder
  • Tylose powder
  • Vodka or a clear extract
Equipment
  • Half sheet pan
  • Parchment paper
  • Whisk
  • Rubber spatula
  • Offset spatula
  • Hand mixer
  • 12" square cake board
  • Ruler
  • Cake turntable
  • Rolling pin
  • Circle cutters
  • Fondant extruder
  • Fondant smoother
  • Fondant tools
  • Small measuring spoon
  • Aluminum foil
  • Piping tips: #1, #7, #1A
  • Piping bags
  • Paint brushes
  • Black ribbon
  • Glue stick

Let's get started!

  1. Spiced Pumpkin Cake: Preheat oven to 350F degrees. Grease and line the half sheet pan.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and salt. 
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the melted butter, granulated sugar, brown sugar, pumpkin puree and eggs until smooth. 
  4. Add wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and whisk until combined.
  5. Spread the batter in the prepared pan and bake for 15 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean.
  6. Let cakes cool completely and freeze for 1 hour. 
  7. Cut cake into three 6 1/2" x 9" rectangles.
  8. Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting: In a large bowl using the hand mixer, beat the cream cheese and butter until smooth. 
  9. Add the vanilla extract, cinnamon and salt then mix until combined. 
  10. Add the powdered sugar in 2 increments, mix well after each addition.
  11. Scoop the Cream Cheese Frosting into a large piping bag.
  12. Stack rectangle pumpkin cakes in the center of the 12" board, filling each layer with the cream cheese frosting. Ice the whole cake in American Buttercream, rounding one of the longer edges and leaving the other three sides with sharp edges. Chill for 1 hour. 

Time to decorate!

  1. Pages: Roll out 3 rectangles of light brown fondant to the height of your iced cake. Press onto the 2 straight sides of the cake. Using the two fondant smoother, pinch off excess fondant to create a sharp edge.
  2. Using a sharp knife and ruler, cut many horizontal lines along the 3 sides of fondant to look like pages. Using a dry paintbrush, lightly dust pages with cocoa powder for a weathered look. 
  3. Board: Cover the cake board around the cake with black fondant. Use corn syrup and paint brush to glue the fondant in place. 
  4. Book Cover: Roll out the brown fondant mixed with tylose into a 10 1/2" x 9 3/4" rectangle. Add three 1/4" wide strips 11" long. Used crumpled foil to create a leathery texture in the fondant. Let it firm up at room temperature for 15 minutes. 
  5. Place brown rectangle on cake leaving a 1/4" overhang over the pages.
  6. Using paintbrush with water as an adhesive, attach 1/4" strips onto the cake board below the pages. Trim off excess. 
  7. Spine: Using brown fondant and fondant tools, make 5 fingers for the spine of the book. Attach them using a paintbrush and water. 
  8. Snakes: Using gray fondant, fondant tools and 4 1/2" circle cutter, make 2 coiled corner snakes and 1 snake for the spine of the book.
  9. Eye clasp: Using gray fondant, 2" and 2 1/2" circle cutters and fondant tools, make the eye clasp. Using brown fondant, roll 3 strips and braid them together, then flatten slightly and cut to the height of the cake.
  10. Silver finish: Mix a small amount silver highlighter dust and vodka or extract, paint all gray decorations and let dry completely.
  11. Using black petal dust and a dry paint brush, dust silver decorations for and old tarnished look.
  12. Eye in clasp: Using the small measuring spoon, piping tips #7 and #1A, 1 1/2" circle cutter and brown, white, blue and black fondant make the eye for inside the clasp.
  13. Using brown fondant and fondant tool, create puckering on the book cover where the snake heads will sit. Blend into book cover with fondant tool. 
  14. Stitches: Using the brown fondant and the fondant extruder tool with a small round opening, extrude fondant and fold it in half. Using water and a paint brush, attach folded strip in patterns all over cover and around each finger on the spine to match the book from the movie. 
  15. Using brown royal icing and #1 piping tip, pipe stitching details. 
  16. Attach all pre-made decorations with brown royal icing. 
  17. Using confectioners glaze and a paint brush, paint eyeball to look glossy. 
  18. Once the decorations have dried, use a mixture of black petal dust and dark brown cocoa powder to dust whole cake using a dry paintbrush, making it look stained and aged. 
  19. Glue black ribbon along the edge of the cake board using a glue stick. 

 

// ONE COLUMN //

 

Written By Rosanna Pansino

Rosanna Pansino Merch