The cake is meant to be a Daruma doll…The Daruma doll (達磨 daruma?), also known as a Dharma doll, is a hollow, round, Japanese doll modeled after Bodhidharma, the founder of the Zen sect of Buddhism. These dolls, though typically red and depicting a bearded man (Dharma), vary greatly in color and design depending on region and artist. Though considered an omocha, meaning toy, Daruma has a design that is rich in symbolism and is regarded more as a talisman of good luck to the Japanese.
About the eyes—or lack of…
The recipient of the doll fills in one eye upon setting the goal, then the other upon fulfilling it. In this way, every time they see the one-eyed Daruma, they recall the goal. I thought I would go ahead and put one eye.
Not what I would consider my best cake, but the daruma is a tough shape to make in cake :) K had asked for this cake specifically, and lucky for me he seemed really happy with it. I used two small round pans, and one half dome pan to make the shape. I was considering carving it so the bottom would be smaller and more like a daruma, but I didn’t want to risk the cake collapsing. His eyes are two white chocolate circles, and one colored in with frosting.
Then I made cupcakes with the remaining batter, and put origami cranes onto toothpicks on top. Oh, and the “15” was shaped sparklers, very cool when lit!
I think everyone had a good time last night. We ordered a ton of vegetarian Chinese food like General Tso’s, Fake Chicken Lo Mein, etc. and no one even knew it was vegetarian, which is always funny. We steamed vegetable dumplings, and some bready/cocoa dumplings we found at Kam Man. We had some little drinks that were flavored vanilla, or pineapple coconut :)
Then they watched Totoro (which was helpful in explaining Cat Bus + Soot Sprites) No one knew that I had sewn soot sprites for the piñata, so when they saw them in the movie and were talking about how much they loved them, I was excited for piñata time. I love that all the kids were excited about the piñata, and since they were older we blindfolded and spun them. After we got through everyone doing hits like that, we let them each take a swing with their eyes open.
We had origami paper out all over the table, so people could make things. I helped teach my sister how to fold paper cranes, and little origami turtles and hats turned up as well.
Three kids spent the night last night, so of course they are all still passed out asleep. Today once I get all the extra kids back to their homes I plan to try and photograph my leftover craft show goods, so I can get my Etsy shop updated. I might not be able to update it all until tomorrow, but I will see what I can do.