The cake its self is Bulk Barn White Cake mix that I tinted with Wilton gel colours. I know its not as fancy to use box mix and such a plain one but I have 3 reasons. 1) I like plain cakes. Chocolate or Vanilla, not mocha or coconut or anything fancy, just good old chocolate or vanilla. 2) This mix is seriously good. I have made complicated cakes from scratch and this mix is just as good if not better. 3) Time, it takes a lot of time to decorate a cake and if I can save time on baking all the better.
The Icing was a new one for me, Swiss Meringue Buttercream from Sweetapolita. I had heard of this icing as being very good for decorating in whippy and ruffly cakes and a lot of people love the taste. It was good but I don't know if I LOVE it. To me it tastes like an up scale, better version of grocery store cake frosting. Its not super sugary or sweet and its nice and light. My mom loved it. I personally like a sweet heavy icing most of the time but this is a lovely change. I had a slight complication in the making of my icing. You are to whip it on high until the meringue cools, which should take aprox 10 min. So i slapped it on the Kitchen Aid, threw it to high and walked away. 10 minutes later i check it and it warm, so I walk away for another 5 come back and its HOT. Like seriously warmer then before. it was glossy, whippy and perfect looking but hot. So i just turned it off and walked away to let it cool, then continued. I did find that after the butter was in and it was all done that it was way too thin. I tried refrigerating it like it suggested but it didn't help much. I ended up adding about 1/4 - 1/3 more of a stick of cold butter and that made it go all lumpy and curdley and then eventually thinned out and was perfect.
I did a simple crumb coat, chilled in fridge for 1 hr and top coated it then used my pallet knife going up and down to give a whippy texture. I then used the pedal technique that I saw on The Hungry Housewife to accent along the bottom.
This was all in practice for baby girls 2nd birthday on Canada Day July1. I am going to do a extra tall cake. Not necessarily ombre its going to go from yellow to orange to pink in 5 or 6 layers and I am trying to decide on the outside. I am contemplating a really whippy uneven look, the up and down like this cake, or the ruffles. Like this one from Sweetapolita
|Swiss Meringue Buttercream Ruffles from Sweetapolita|
I am leaning toward the ruffles except I know its going to take A LOT of icing and given I am not a huge fan of gads of icing I am not sure what to do. I am going to be sticking a pin wheel out the top so I am thinking this is perhaps a bit more fancy then I want it. I was contemplating doing 2 tiers, the bottom being a taller tier in ruffles and the top tier being whippy and then topped by the pin wheel. Only problem is that you cant really do a great ombre type thing. I mean the top could be say yellow and orange and the bottom pink but I think I might be making life more complicated then it needs to be. I am also contemplating a full on petal technique on the entire cake but again might be too fancy for the simplicity I am going for.
All in all the icing took about 2.5 hrs from start to finish but most of that was chilling time. about 30 min to make the icing 10 min to stack and crumb coat 1 hr to chill and 30+ min to ice and do the petal technique at the bottom then clean up.