Cakes and Confections

DIY Wedding Cake Decorating 21.03.2013

Our lovely friends over at WeddingCakeDIY.com have prepared this DIY tutorial for us. This tutorial is a small part of a DIY Wedding Cake Instruction Pack for a 3-tier rosette buttercake. The full pack includes the cake recipe, how to construct a 3-tier cake, and how to store and transport your cake.

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  • Pre-prepared cake(s) that have already been iced with a thin layer of buttercream icing
  • Buttercream icing refrigerated the day before (you’ll need about 3 – 4 cups of icing for a 8″ round cake)
  • Wilton No. 4B open star decorating tip, Wilton large couple and a piping bag
  • Fabric scissors to trim your piping bags
  • Teaspoons for measuring icing and removing any mistakes
  • Baking paper for practicing your rosettes

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  • Lay down some baking paper on a flat surface to practice rosettes.
  • Assemble your piping bag, nozzle and coupler (try this link if you need help).
  • Add 3 teaspooons icing into your piping bag and practice icing 3-4 cm diameter rosettes.

Tip: Start each rosette from the outside and work inwards.

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  • Place cake(s) on a raised surface that you can work around (or turn) so it’s easy for you to decorate around the cake(s).
  • Add 3 heaped teaspoons of icing into your piping bag.
  • Start from the bottom edge of your cake and ice rosettes around the cake, one row at a time.
  • Work your way around the sides until they are covered with rosettes.

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Tip: Don’t do more than 3 – 4 rosettes at a time to avoid air bubbles from popping your rosettes. Simply remove your rosette with a teaspoon if you make a mistake.

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  • To decorate the top of your cake, start by icing rosettes around the outer edge and work your way towards the middle, one row at a time.

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Tip: Fill in any gaps with a star shape and don’t be afraid to do some wonky rosettes to avoid gaps.

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Notes for multi-tier cakes:

  • If you have multiple tiers, your cakes should be already constructed with dowel rods before you start.
  • To ice rosettes, start from the sides of the bottom tier and work your way up the tiered cakes, one row of rosettes at a time.
  • For a 3-tier cake, you can keep the top tier separate to assemble at the venue. If you do this, leave the top center area of your middle tier empty (where your top tier will go).

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Need more help with how to bake, construct, store or transport your DIY wedding cake? Visit this link to get the complete instruction pack for this cake. Or visit WeddingCakeDIY.com to pick your own wedding cake size, flavours and design to get a custom instruction pack.

Questions about decorating your cake with buttercream rosettes? Leave your comments here and we’d love to help you out.

Plus-Size Cupcakes 01.11.2012

We’ve found the cupcakes to rule all cupcakes; they’re ginormous and made by Melissa of Buttercream Couture.

We can’t help but join the posse that’s obsessed with Melissa and her huge cupcakes, they’re just too fun.

Melissa bakes as a hobby and for enjoyment, but explains “Weddings have this nasty habit of trying to ruin my hobby so I take on only the ones that excite me. I rarely bake novelty cakes and strictly avoid anything that requires gobs of dye and glitter; everyone likes to look at those things, no one likes to eat them. My priority is pleasing the taste buds first; if I can please the eyes too then it’s a bonus.”

Bonus indeed. Here are a few of our favourite plus-sized beauties made by Melissa…

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Images via Buttercream Couture

Luscious Pavlova 03.11.2011

Wondering what cake to have on your wedding day?

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Why not a pavlova? After all, it is one of Australia’s favourite desserts! Never mind the long-standing debate about whether Australia or New Zealand invented the recipe. What’s important is we know that this fabulous cake was named in honour of the famous Russian ballerina Anna Pavlova, who visited both countries in 1926 on her world tour.

For the uninitiated, a pavlova is a meringue cake with a delicate, crisp crust and a soft, marshmallow-like center. This would be fantastic for an intimate, informal wedding where you’re not too keen on having your cake all perfectly done up. A pavlova has that charming homemade look about it, with all the peaks and cracks of the meringue showing, the whipped cream all fluffed up, and the fruit piled on top of the cream.

Here are two recipes for a classic pavlova and a chocolate-flavored one. And you can have two options: one large cake or many cute little pavlovas for each of the guests.

Stephanie Alexander’s Pavlova

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Ingredients:

4 egg whites

pinch of salt

250g castor sugar

2 teaspoons corn flour

1 teaspoon white wine vinegar

few drops of vanilla extract

300ml cream

Fruit to preference (raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, kiwi fruit, passion fruit, or pomegranate)

Method:

Preheat over to 180°C. Beat egg whites and salt until soft, satiny peaks form. Beat in sugar, a third at a time, until stiff and shiny. Sprinkle in corn flour, vinegar, and vanilla extract, and fold lightly.

Spread onto baking paper within 20cm radius circle and smooth tops and sides. Place in over and reduce temperature to 150°C. Bake for 1 – 1.15 hours (depending on your oven). Turn oven off and leave to cool completely. Turn upside down and top with whipped cream and fruit.

Recipe via LifeStyled

Nigella Lawson’s Chocolate Raspberry Pavlova

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Ingredients:

For the chocolate meringue base:

6 egg whites

300g caster sugar

3 tablespoons cocoa powder, sieved

1 teaspoon balsamic or red wine vinegar

50g dark chocolate, finely chopped

For the topping:

500ml double cream

500g raspberries

2-3 tablespoons coarsely grated dark chocolate

Method:

1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4 and line a baking tray with baking parchment.

2. Beat the egg whites until satiny peaks form, and then beat in the sugar a spoonful at a time until the meringue is stiff and shiny. Sprinkle over the cocoa and vinegar, and the chopped chocolate. Then gently fold everything until the cocoa is thoroughly mixed in. Mound on to a baking sheet in a fat circle approximately 23cm in diameter, smoothing the sides and top. Place in the oven, then immediately turn the temperature down to 150°C/gas mark 2 and cook for about one to one and a quarter hours. When it’s ready it should look crisp around the edges and on the sides and be dry on top, but when you prod the centre you should feel the promise of squidginess beneath your fingers. Turn off the oven and open the door slightly, and let the chocolate meringue disc cool completely.

3. When you’re ready to serve, invert on to a big, flat-bottomed plate. Whisk the cream till thick but still soft and pile it on top of the meringue, then scatter over the raspberries. Coarsely grate the chocolate so that you get curls rather than rubble, as you don’t want the raspberries’ luscious colour and form to be obscured, and sprinkle haphazardly over the top, letting some fall, as it will, on the plate’s rim.

Recipe via Nigella.com

{First image via Papa Bun; second image via LifeStyled; third image via What Katie Ate}

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