Thursday, September 16, 2010

Make-Bake-Decorate Series


This is my favorite part. I really love all parts of cake making, but decorating is my favorite of my favorite parts.

I make my buttercream icing from scratch. It makes enough, sometimes a bit more than enough, and I can control the consistency.

Like with the cake, I mix the wet ingredients together first, and then add the dry ingredients slowly.

Except for that one time when I was in a hurry. Let's just say the powdered sugar made it across the kitchen to the refrigerator. And not while it was in a bowl.

Homemade buttercream icing goes through stages while it's coming together - it starts off almost like a pie crust, and then it becomes smooth the longer you blend it. Then, based on the thickness of the icing you prefer, you can gradually make it thinner.

Once the icing is your preferred thickness, you're ready to crumb coat your cake. This is a thin layer of icing that keeps any cake crumbs from showing through on your final coat of icing.

Smooth the icing on evenly, and pay no attention to any crumbs in the icing. These will be hidden by the final, finished coat of icing.

When you are finished with the crumb coat, let the cake sit for a few minutes. This helps the icing to set.

Now's the time to add your final layer of icing to finish the cake.

Quick tip - once you smooth the icing on, let it set for a few minutes again. To make the icing appear smooth, take a small piece of parchment paper and place it against the cake. Take a drinking glass and gently smooth it along the parchment paper.

Making sure your icing has set a bit before this step is crucial - you don't want to pull off any of the icing when you remove the parchment paper.

Now is the fun part. Be creative! For my mom's cake, I used roses that I made from royal icing. You could do anything your heart desires! Keep watching for more ideas to create cakestraordinary cakes!

Was this tutorial helpful? What steps do you do? What steps do you do differently? Anything else you want to know about my process?

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