Dorie Greenspan's Perfect Party Cake: filling?
I am going to attempt to make a duck-shaped Perfect Party Cake as my son's first birthday cake. I don't like buttercream (and he'll never know the difference) -- any other suggestions for filling? I want to keep the lemon/raspberry jam idea. I was thinking something pudding- or custard-like, maybe a lemon-flavored pastry cream? I'm worried it will be too heavy or unwieldy and will cause the layers to slide around or sink. I was also thinking about frosting with whipped cream, tinted yellow and orange for the beak with food coloring. All suggestions are welcome!
For lemon/raspberry flavor - layer lemon curd and raspberry jam for the filling. Puddings and custards are pretty tough because they tend to been too "slippery" but you could try a very stiff lemon mousse. White chocolate ganache with lemon?
For the whipped cream frosting, if its going to sit any time at all, be sure you stablize the whipped cream.
I wouldn't use whipped cream if you're making a duck shape and want to maintain the way it looks. It'll meld together where the colors meet and it could soften too much if you don't stabilize it. Would a cream cheese frosting be too much like buttercream? A rolled fondant or marzipan would look great but you'd have to fool around w/ rolled frosting.