Feb 16 2011
Friends, I may have found my calling.
Friday was a workshop in Advanced Cake Decorating, meaning we all baked and embellished a miniature-sized wedding cake. It’s interesting how my class is divided into the pastry-loving folks and the pastry-phobic; some people were stressed out by the whole exercise and couldn’t wait for their cakes to be finished, while others loved every minute of it. Personally, I felt like I was at a middle school birthday party all day. That is a good thing.
Now, I don’t really want to be a cake decorator for a living, but if we are close friends and you’d like for me to make your cake one day, I’d be delighted. I had SO much fun with this.
We started out by baking a few layers of a traditional Genoise cake, which actually isn’t the best for decorating because it’s so light. I alternated each layer with white chocolate buttercream and lemon curd. Then we covered it with a crumb coat of buttercream to “seal in” the crumbs, and you refrigerate it so that it’s easier to work with.
Next, I rolled out a layer of fondant, the thick frosting with a consistency of playdough. After you roll it out into a thin sheet, you can literally pick it up and place it on the cake, then fit the fondant to the top and sides. The trick here is getting it smooth, which isn’t easy. See the puckering at the bottom of mine? Clearly I could use a little practice. In fact, most people opted to put additional bands of fondant around the bottom of their cakes to cover up the mistakes.
After the fondant came the fun part: piping decorations onto the cake. I piped some bows, curls and dots for a traditional look, and made a fondant rose to go on top.
My cake was frilly and traditional, which isn’t really my style. But I figured: When’s the next time I’ll have a chance to do this? Might as well go all out.
Now I’m just crossing my fingers one of my friends will decide to get married soon on a VERY tight budget.