Sunday, April 17, 2011

hydrangea {cake}

I was going about my day, minding my own business, when I was ruthlessly attacked by this blog post. It just came up out of nowhere, tripped me, and hit me over the head with a piping bag. Have you ever been hit over the head with a piping bag? Although it may not actually hurt all that badly, it causes your brain to think of just one thing. Cake. Specifically, trying to decorate a cake like the one you've just seen. Even though none of the cakes you've made thus far have required actual technique. I guess I've got a little bit of crazy in my bones because I decided I was going to try to make it for my little girl's 8th birthday anyway.
I made two practice cakes before I attempted the final product. Thankfully I'm part of a weekly small group that doesn't seem to mind helping me get rid of baked goods.
For the first practice cake, I tried an easy method using a Wilton 4D tip. I combined light blue and lavender frosting in the piping bag and just plopped little flowers all over the cake. While this method would work great on cupcakes, it did not work as well on a whole cake. The most accurate description came from the one of the small groupers who said, "It looks like my swimming cap from when I was a little girl!" Yeah. Not quite the look I was going for.
So it was back to the drawing board. Err, youtube. This time I found a method where each individual petal was separately piped on. Oy vey. It looked like a lot of work, but it was the look I was going for so I had to try it.
After a lot of practice I felt like I kinda sorta had it down. My flowers still didn't look quite as nice as I would have liked, but it was a definite upgrade over the first approach. And then I got to the sides of the cake. Holy guacamole Batman. It was like performing an acrobatic routine trying to get those little petals piped correctly.

I thought the final product turned out pretty decent considering my lack of actual piping skills.

I also think it may be time for me to invest in a cake plate or two. As much as I love my Fiestaware, it's really better for eating cake off of than displaying it.

Of course, wouldn't you know, after all of the hours I put in trying to make her cake just right, the one she wound up favoring was the one she decorated herself.