When you want to create a beautiful cake for a birthday or other event, you may find that you want to place a pattern atop the cake for decoration. The easiest way to do this is to transfer the pattern to the cake surface so that you can follow it while you are decorating. Piping gel is the most effective way to transfer a decorating template to a cake surface. Here are the steps you’ll need to transfer the image with ease.
Create the Base
Before you can transfer an image to the surface of the cake, you’ll need to create a smooth, crusted base of frosting. Make your favorite buttercream frosting recipe, but replace at least half of the butter you would normally use with shortening. The shortening is essential for the frosting to crust over, which creates the surface you need for the decorations.
Smooth the surface completely using an offset spatula. The easiest way to create a flawless surface is to dip the offset spatula in hot water, shake the excess water off and then run the spatula across the surface of the cake. You can do the same to create smooth sides. Then, let the cake rest for at least half an hour so that the frosting can set and form the necessary crust.
Make Piping Gel
There are several varieties of piping gel available at most retail outlets with the cake decorating supplies, but if you prefer to make your own, you might be surprised at how easy it is. For a stiff gel that’s great for decorative piping, put two tablespoons of water into a small saucepan. Sprinkle two packets of unflavored gelatin over the top and let it sit until it starts to dissolve and the water starts to look cloudy.
Once the gelatin dissolves, heat the mixture over medium heat, stirring with a silicone spatula. When the mixture is clear, add two cups of light corn syrup and continue to heat it until everything comes together. Store any leftover gel in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Outline the Image
Tape the printed image to a flat surface and then place a thin sheet of parchment paper over the top. Scoop out a generous amount of the piping gel into a bowl. The amount you’ll need will depend on how many lines you need to go over, so just use your best judgment. It’s always better to have some left over than to run out halfway through the picture.
Think about the primary colors of the image and choose the most common one to tint the gel. This will help you see the lines on the cake surface as you work. Add a small amount of decorator’s food coloring – this is the gel or paste coloring in the cake decorating department – using a toothpick. Mix it thoroughly, then put the tinted gel into a piping bag with a number 1 tip on the bag. The number 1 tip is the fine-point tip used for writing.
Trace the lines of the image by piping the gel along each line that’s visible through the parchment paper. Once you’ve traced all of the lines, lift the paper carefully and turn it over so that gel side is facing the cake. Place the image where you want it on the cake surface. Trace over the gel lines lightly with a decorator’s paint brush. Make sure that you go over every line. When you’re finished, gently lift the parchment paper from one corner, pulling slowly. The gel image will remain on the cake so that you can begin decorating.
With these steps, you can create a flawless cake for your next event. Choose the image that you want on your cake and this process will make it easy to transfer it into place. For further assistance, contact professionals , such as those from Denise’s Delicacies.Learn More