I had originally posted the how-to directions for this dragon cake on Cake Central, but during a server crash, the thread was lost. So I decided to repost the instructions here for any who missed it.

I've seen a lot of laying-down dragon cakes, and wanted to make my dragon upright. I started with three 6" round cakes, one 4" round cake, one cupcake, and a skimpy 5x7" oval on the bottom. The 5x7" was the leftover batter from all the other layers, and because I only needed a little extra width on the bottom for the tail area, the thinness of this layer worked out fine.


Roger the  Dragon

Stack the layers of sturdy cake (we all remember that cake sculpture needs to be sturdy, dense cake, right??) as shown in this photo. The 5x7" is on the bottom, then the 6" layers, the 4" layer and the cupcake on top. Board and dowel between every two layers.  Underneath the cupcake head, make a cardboard oval covered in plastic wrap for his nose. Dowel down through everything, including the nose board. You can see the through-dowel sticking up just a little on the dragon's head. At this point, he looks like Big Bird in a baseball cap.

One thing I'd like to mention here: Unless there's a good reason *not* to, turn the heads on your sculptures. The little bit of life and movement that comes from angling the head is very much worth the teeny weeny bit of extra effort it takes.

The buttercream has been applied and preliminarily smoothed. You can see the tail stump and the haunches clearly now, and the nose board has been covered in buttercream as well.

Begin to carve away cake to get to a rough dragon shape. Here you can see that I've tapered the cakes to a nice, smooth body shape and begun carving the haunches.

I have decided to name him Roger. No good reason for it, he just looks like a "Roger" to me. My husband says Roger is portly and I think Roger is offended.

If you have my DVD, you know that sometimes I get lazy and use M&Ms for eyes on my animals. Roger got the M&Ms. I used a food-safe marker to draw on the pupils, attached them to his head, and piped on eyelids. I also finished up by adding a lot of detail in his face, fingers and toes, and wings.  A little red airbrushing (applied before the fingers were piped on!) gives his tummy some interest.

Roger is a young dragon and hasn't had much time to accumulate much treasure (it's not because he's too portly to go out pillaging, thankyouverymuch). This is also why his wings are a little on the small side. If you have an older dragon to make, pipe on bigger wings for yours and give him a big pile of treasure. I used a rose petal tip to pipe these wings. The treasure is some chocolate foil coins, chocolate rocks, rock candy, fondant pearls, and silver dragees.

Now that the body is covered, I piped on and smoothed the tail, hind legs, arms, nostrils and lips. Use a round tip in whatever size works out best for your particular dragon. I like a 10 or 12 for larger things like arms, and a 2 or 3 for lips and fingers and toes. You can see the spinal ridge and more definition in the haunches. Do this by adding or removing buttercream as needed. Creative piping and smoothing are entirely up to you at this point. Not many people have seen real dragons so you can use your imagination and no one will correct you.