Perry the Platypus Cake Tutorial: The Prep Work

[Part 2 is here]

I have a request for the tutorial to make the Perry the Platypus Cake, and since it’s needed in a hurry, I’m doing this tutorial in two parts.  By the way, I did a really detailed tutorial on last year’s dragon cake, and this year’s cake is actually similar, if a little simpler. So it wouldn’t be a bad idea to read through that tutorial in case I miss anything I covered there, as far as techniques.

More pics of the cake and the party here!

We’ll start with the prep work: assembling your hardware, getting the shopping done, and making ahead the components!


  • 8.5″x4.5″ loaf pan
  • second loaf pan or cupcake pan
  • 9×12″ rectangular pan
  • Rolling Pin
  • Parchment paper (optional, but helpful)
  • Large piece of cardboard, covered in foil, freezer paper or other paper, for cake board. ~24″x18″

Shopping List:

  • 1 16 oz bag Marshmallows
  • 2 lb powdered sugar
  • Crisco
  • Corn starch
  • 1 8oz pkg cream cheese or Neufchâtel cheese
  • vanilla
  • 1 stick butter
  • Pound Cake Ingredients
  • Ingredients for base case (1-2 boxes cake mix or your favorite recipe)
  • Food coloring (I used this one for the black and the green: Wilton Garden Candy Color Set, and some cheap yellow and red gel coloring.)
  • Brown food coloring, or 1 bar dark chocolate.
  • Vanilla or other light colored tootsie rolls (our local Dollar Tree had a two pack of the large sticks, which was more than enough)
  • Wooden skewers (short ones are fine)
  • Candy for base cake decoration (I used jelly bellies, but anything would work.  Green candies or green coconut would make a nice ‘grass’ effect)

Make ahead:

Set out your butter and cream cheese to soften.

Bake your first cake (ours was chocolate!) to serve as the ground that Perry lays on.  I used a box mix for this, and i think 1 box in a 13×9 pan was a maybe a little skimpy.  So you might want to consider making up 2 batches, and using 1.5 for the cake, and doing the rest as cupcakes.  Let cool thoroughly.

Bake your second cake, in a loaf pan, 3/4 filled. (here’s the recipe – with this recipe you’ll have enough for the loaf pan, plus some extra cupcakes) You want it as tall as possible, so err on the side of overfilling (Place a sheet pan under the loaf pan to catch any spillage). Bake the remainder of your second cake batter as cupcakes, or in your second loaf pan.  You’ll need some extra cake later, so save the extras, don’t eat them yet!
I like to use a sling of parchment paper as a liner to ensure ease of removal from the pans.  Just cut a sheet of parchment paper as wide as your pan is long, but long enough so that if set inside the pan, it hangs over both sides.  Spray the pan with non-stick spray, and  press the parchment.  If necessary, secure the sides with binder clips to keep the parchment in place and pressed against the sides of the pan.

Allow cakes to cool thoroughly.

You can go ahead and make up your batch of icing.  I like Cream Cheese Icing — here’s a quick recipe:  Cream together in mixer : 8 oz cream cheese, 1 stick butter (both softened).  Add 1 teas vanilla.  Slowly add 1 lb powdered (icing) sugar.  Beat until smooth.

Place your base cake on the cake board,  and frost the base cake.  Reserve at least 1/3 of the icing for later use.

Make up your batch of Marshmallow fondant and place in the refrigerator, wrapped tightly according to the directions.  Don’t color it yet.

You’re all prepped and ready to go!

Next we’ll assemble and decorate your Perry cake… go here!