Guest writer Matt once again. Another birthday cake! This was a variant on Mrs. Cebulski's Druid Sacrifice. The only changes to the recipe were in the raisin filling. The octopus mosaic was created with sulphured and unsulphured crystallized ginger, with raisins for eyes.
To the previous filling recipe I added a couple ounces of cranberries, a little sugar, a teaspoon of lemon juice, and another tablespoon of water. The cranberries and the sugar didn't make the cut. I've rewritten the filling recipe below, incorporating these changes. I also discovered that the "crush ice" setting on our blender works well for raisins. This setting makes the blender run in pulses and gives it plenty of power. I still had to stop occasionally to punch the filling down, but much less frequently than before.
10-2016: A food processor with a small bowl (we have one that came as an attachment to an immersion blender) works even better than a regular blender for pureeing the raisins.
Combine in small saucepan:
1 1/2 cups raisins (packed) -- about 12 oz.
zest of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp lemon juice
3 T water
Cover and boil 1-2 minutes.Transfer to blender or small food processor and puree in pulses, stopping as necessary to punch down.