You know when you wait all week to decorate a cake? And you build it up in your head – it’s going to be this amazingly beautiful cake, with ruffles, and fondant toppers, and maybe a surprise inside…
And then, like, it all goes to shit? (Pardon my French.)
I just had one of those days. I am bloody exhausted.
It’s my grandma’s birthday tomorrow and I was planning to make a pretty ombre ruffle cake. Straightforward enough eh?
I stacked and crumbcoated my cake mid-week. I’d bought a petal frosting tip a while ago which had just been sitting in the cupboard, so I was excited to finally try my hand at the ruffle technique. My ombre colours were looking pretty, and look, I even scored the cake like the tutorials teach you to.
Then it all went wrong.
It turns out that Wilton’s 104 tip is tiny. So tiny that my piping bag broke as I tried to squeeze the frosting out. The ruffles I managed to pipe were tiny and broken. Sigh. So much for a ruffle cake.
But that’s OK. Shit happens. To Plan B I turned – the ombre cake.
Then I realised my frosting was really, freaking stiff. I’d deliberately been tightfisted with the milk because I read that the frosting had to be firm to hold its shape in ruffles, but this frosting was actually like cement. What a face palm moment.
I had to rebeat my frosting, separately obviously, since I’d already mixed in the colouring. And of course I put too much milk in, so I had to go back and beat more icing sugar in.
By this point I was feeling pretty defeated. But I took a deep breath and prodded myself on, giving the cake a fresh coat of cream cheese frosting before the ombre buttercream layers went on.
And surprisingly, it worked out. I also realised that the reason my frosting is never smooth is that it is too stiff. The frosting with what I thought was too much milk turned out to be great for a smooth finish. This is definitely the smoothest cake I’ve buttercreamed – still a long way to go to a perfect finish, especially the top, but hey, silver lining!
I dressed the cake up in a sprinkles halo, and decided to make a little 3D fondant heart topper to put on top. I took photos while I was making it, so I might put up a mini tutorial on it later!
What a day. Stressful as it was, I’m pretty happy with the way it all turned out. But seriously, I’m going back to cupcakes for now, no more cakes for a while.