I've been wanting to try making a "present cake" for a while, and I finally had an excuse to do one. I was having some real problems making the bow look good. Can anyone help?
Also, I used the new Wilton cakepan that has the heart center (so when you cut into the cake a heart filled with cream is in the middle of the cake). Anyway, I'm not sure if it was the pan or what, but instead of the sides of my cake being nice and straight, they sort of bulged out in the middle. Do I need a firmer cake recipe?
Let's start w/the cake bulging sides. That usually is an indication of too much liquid in the recipe. It's also possible you didn't bake it long enough.
As for making the bow look right - what kind of problem did you have. Some things beginners do is: Make the loops too long; make them too thick; make them too short and finally, not make enough loops.
When making loops, know what size the cake is and make the loops less than 1/2 that size. Example: on a 6" round cake each loop should start out as a 2 1/2" long strip; then fold it in 1/2 forming a small/short loop. If the cake is an 8"er, the loop strip will be 3 1/2" long before forming into the loop. You make 1/2 of the total # of loops this size; then make 1/4 of them 1/2 to 1" shorter and finally the remainder another 1/2" shorter than those.
For the cake example you showed there are 7 or 8 loops of each color. So 4 or 5 would be formed from a 3 1/2" long strip; 2-3 from 3" and one or two from 2 1/2" strips. It never hurts to make more than you think you need & in several sizes! It's great to have extras in case you brake one putting it together or to have on hand for some last-second order that might come in
Thanks for the tips...I really appreciate it.