The birthday boy wanted a Volcano. I wanted to create the best, smoking, spewing, exploding Etna. I researched dry ice and its merits and drawbacks. How to beg, borrow or steal it! Or simply to buy it. How to store and handle it. How to get it to smoke, effectively!

But it wasn’t to be! The birthday mom had 25 little fellas attending the party. The thought of which probably gave her sleepless nights. She asked me to desist….and so here was the tame volcano version. The Etna sans explosion. The Kilimanjaro without a kick. Merapi gone mild!

Delicious marble cake, stacked high in layers and carved to form a cone. Covered in ganache with molten buttercream lava flowing down its sides.

The volcano is on a desert island, studded with tiny coconut trees.

And the birthday boy’s name forms the plumes of magma shooting out of the crater.


Do write in and let me know if you’ve ever used dry ice, or done any special effects in your cakes.



  1. Awesome! spewing, erupting Volcano!

  2. The “vulcano” is lovely and be sure you did the right thing! The last thing I heard about dry ice was about a famous restaurant owner in my town in Germany who died of lack of oxygen in his car while transporting some dry ice! It seems that this dangerous stuff absorbs huge quantities of oxygen.

  3. What a nice looking cake! I love all the details you put into it.

  4. Amazing, and so creative! Little boys can be very difficult to bake for, since so many fancy, sculpted cakes seem to be made with a much more girly audience in mind. I especially love the color variations in the lava- It’s so vibrant.