my journey to bake the perfect cake

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A Bella Cake Home Celebration Cakes

Graduation Cakes

These two graduation cakes were sure a treat to make. I had a theme to work with for the 2017 Cake – New horizons and trails ahead – frosted and fondant covered and decorated 12″ and 10″ tiers, three filled layers each.

For the 2018 Cake, the class colours (black and gold) were chosen and an elegant style was set and so I was able to just imagine the cake for this one and, in the end, tried to create what I had imagined.

I made the two tiers, three filled layers each, frosted and covered with fondant, and for the third, the cap, I baked the cake in a bowl so I could have the round/dome graduation cap base. I covered the cap and mortarboard with frosting and then black fondant, and attached a black fondant ‘rope’ and ‘tassel’ from a ‘button’ on the top.

I made butter cookies, using the cap/mortarboard cookie cutter I’d ordered from Amazon. After rolling out the cookie dough, I cut out each cookie and placed each one on the parchment lined baking sheet. I pushed a long cookie stick (Wilton) into the bottom of each cookie. It took practice from other cookie stick “baking events” to stagger the cut cookies on the sheet to allow room for the sticks. Essentially, placing a cut cookie in one direction down one side of the pan (sticks inward) and turning the pan and placing cut cookies down the other side (sticks inward / parallel to the first row).

After the cookies cooled completely, I frosted them with Royal Icing and wrote the graduate’s names and piped the tassels also. After the cake was delivered and assembled, I put the cookies (still on sheets for transport) around the tiers of the cake. In this case, I used gold paper straws as decorative “sleeves” for the sticks into the cake tiers. This method looks much nicer than the white cardboard sticks.

Royal Icing
2 egg whites
1 Tblsp Lemon Juice
3+ Cups Powdered Sugar
Mix until very smooth/well blended
Pipe an outline (#4 tip) on each cookie, let dry/harden and then “flood” each cookie with a tablespoon of frosting, quickly smoothing it to the ‘edges’ (hard frosting outline). Again, allow to dry/harden completely
With a smaller tip (#2)
(add powdered food colouring to royal icing to colour)
‘write’ on each cookie – names, sayings, designs, whatever.
Again allowing to dry completely.

I *lift the cookies with a *spatula. Tip: resist picking them up by the stick off the baking sheet :-/ *experience! 

A Bella Cake Home Celebration Cakes

Winter Wonderland Cake

You can make a “Winter Wonderland” cake for a variety of occasions — a bridal shower, wedding, birthday or any other wintertime event.  Soft lighting, soft greens and sparkles will make any occasion beautiful!!

Make cakes (easily done in advance;  wrapped and frozen), then on the day of, or day before the event, fill with tasty filling and frost with white buttercream frosting.

From there, you can pipe snowballs, white flowers, pearls or whatever and then add clear sparkly sprinkles, white sprinkles or other various piping around the cake to look like snowy swirls or snowballs. Cakepops work well for snowballs!


For my most recent cake, I made a batch of white cakepops (without sticks) and put them around the cake as snowballs. I made snowflakes out of royal icing and after they had thoroughly set (24 hours), I put them on the cake and around the sides.

♥ Royal Icing for making Snowflakes

4 Tablespoons Meringue Powder
16 ounces Confectioner’s Powdered  Sugar
6 – 8 Tablespoons Warm Water

Beat all ingredients until stiff peaks form, adding water a tablespoon at a time until you get the smooth whipped consistency.

Be sure your bowl and utensils are completely grease-free — if not, the icing will not whip up properly.

To make Snowflakes, draw or trace snowflakes on a sheet of parchment paper. Turn parchment over BEFORE you pipe the royal icing on the lines you’ve traced!!!

These Snowflake Cutters from Amazon are very beautiful — not only for making outlines for this application, but also beautiful cookies, white chocolate cut-outs, other craft projects, etc.
I have this Snowflake set for fondant and cookie cutouts.

  • Make Royal Icing.
  • Fit a piping bag with a round tip and fill with the Royal Icing.
  • *Remember to turn the parchment over after tracing the snowflakes or you will have the snowflake stencil/pencil print on the underside of the royal icing snowflake!
    {trust me! 😉 }

  • Using your round tip/piping bag, begin making your snowflakes by following the outlines from your snowflake cookie cutters.  Or you can make a variety of sizes of snowflakes by piping six sided crosses with ‘arrows’ on each line.

Leave the snowflakes to set up *undisturbed* for a full day. And, be sure to make plenty of snowflakes for your cake project — in other words, make extra to make up for the inevitable breakage!

The snowflakes will *easiliy* lift from the parchment.  They’ll stand up on, or out of, or into, the sides of the frosted cake.

If you make a batch of white cakepops you can use these as ‘snowballs’ on or around the cake.

Celebration Cakes

Triple Chocolate Celebration Cake

anauctioncakeThe Triple Chocolate Celebration Cake is probably one of my favourite cakes to make.  It’s also the most tedious and most exasperating cake to make, too!  But, it’s worth it!  Isn’t that the case with most delightful things or experiences?  Such things often take time, effort, patience, expense, and attention to detail!

For this cake,  there are no superfluous steps — and the recipe must be read very carefully and the components ordered for plenty of time in advance – in fact, it’s probably best to make this cake a day in advance (except for the final topping with fresh fruit.

Leave out one component, and you’ll probably still have a delicious cake but you won’t have the “Triple Chocolate Celebration Cake!”

This is the Epicurious recipe — I try to follow it *pretty closely when I make it.  I do use Hershey’s chocolate chips for the *semi-sweet chocolate when called for in the recipe .  Otherwise, the cost is too exorbitant to make the cake.  Pfeil & Holing Transfer sheets, Amazon.

 

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