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Any ideas for a math or statistics themed birthday cake?

  1. Apr 8, 2008 #1
    hi :)

    you may remember me as the girl who drew a comicbook featuring a mathematician superhero for her nerdlove boyfriend as a valentine's day present.

    well, now his birthday is coming up, and I'd like to bake him a math-themed cake. I was wondering if any of you fine quantitative types had any ideas that would make a cool math-themed cake?

    other than just making a sheet cake and putting an equation on it?

    his favorite equation is the fourier integral on the schwartz space, this one: http://upload.wikimedia.org/math/7/4/f/74f0c6cd36620dd38e8cbc45088d887f.png
    he also likes this one:

    He's particularly interested in statistics and probably going back to school for a phd in stats.

    my baking skills are ... i wouldn't go as far as saying superb, but pretty freaking good, so if it needs to be something complicated, multiple levels, 3D, tiered, etc, I could probably pull it off.

    some other ideas, just to start brainstorming:
    Maybe bake him a bunch of cupcakes, and put different things on each cupcake so you could make equations with them?
    He also loves space/NASA stuff, so if all else fails and I can't think of a creative math-y cake, I'll make him an Armadillo Airspace rocketship cake :)

    Thank you everyone for your ideas :)
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 8, 2008 #2
    Here is an idea I came up with off the top of my head:

    I would first construct a custom pan to bake the cake in the shape of an integral, and perhaps all the letters of the his favorite formula.

    You can make them small, about the size of a cupcake. The way you can construct the custom pans should be simple.

    You will need:
    1) scissors
    2) Cardboard
    3) Pen
    4) Lots of tinfoil

    Start by tracing each shape in the cardboard. Cut the shape out, and wrap it with tinfoil a bunch of times until it is sufficiently covered, and has 1 or two layers. Now get the cardboard out by cutting along the side of the shape to make an exit large enough to get it out. After the cardboard is out, flatten the tinfoil completely and you will have the base of you cooking vessel.

    Next construct walls of your vessel. This will be a bit tricky, but they don't have to go up too high. Just make them so that they are sturdy enough to hold cake batter, and maintain the shape of the base.

    Once you have all the "pans" you need, you can fill with cake batter, cook each, and spell out his favorite formula. Be sure to frost each one.

    Additionally, you don't have to make "cake". Cookies might be easier.

    For Cookies, skip the tin foil all together. Roll out the cookie dough so that is pretty flat, and use the cardboard cut outs to cut out the shapes from the dough. then you can cook the cookies on a regular cookie sheet, and you can spell out his favorite formulas with cookies.

    Hope that sparks some ideas.
  4. Apr 8, 2008 #3
    Thanks, Diffy! That's a very cool idea.

    Oh, also, he's turning 29... so any good equations that the answer would be 29? then I could bake him a cake and it would say Happy (and then the equation)th

    I'm not all that analytical, so would appreciate any suggestions
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