Do you all use icing dams? I know it says to use one in the wilton book, but my teacher said it's not necessary. Just wondering if I should use one on this wedding cake, as last week the lemon curd leaked out on my nieces cake? If I do use an icing dam should it be b/c even if I'm using pastry pride to decorate? Worried about the curd leaking now and am thinking of doing lemon mousse instead.
I use an icing dam on all my torted cakes and I make it from buttercream. It does hold the filling in nicely. Make certain there is a little space between the edge of the cake and the dam to allow it to expand when you put the second layer on.
I do a dam even with a mousse - I think better safe than sorry! And yes - I'd do it with BC - the PP will probably not be "strong" enuff ..
Since I do not refrigerate my cakes once I have buttercream and fondant on them. I recently used a lemon curd buttercream filling in which, for some reason, for the first time, decided I did not need a dam. It was still a thick buttercream and it just didn't seem necessary. BIG MISTAKE! I wanted to shoot myself when the filling started to bulge through my fondant.
I always do a stiff dam. And if I'm using any type of fruit filling, I put a layer of buttercream down, then the fruit filling.
I guess I'll be using a dam then, just to be safe.
Another question then, buttercream dam is ok when I'm not using it anywhere else on my cake?
I'm a wilton instructor, and I always tell my students to use a dam. It nneds to be THICK buttercream - I keep some out and add extra p/s to it to make sure it is thick. I then use a bag with just a coupler to make the dam....fill, put the next layer on, then I take that same bag & thick icing to fill the space between the 2 layers - then crumbcoat. Ever since doing it this way, no bulges or leaks of any kind.
^^^^^ is exactly how I do it!!! =} And ever since I found this way - not a single bulge!!
I use a dam most of the time, but I don't use anything special... same thing I frost the cake with (usually IMBC), and most of my cakes are filled with mousses, custards or curds.
I've never used the IMBC - maybe that is the secret!
I'm really confused at the moment, I wondered if anyone could help me.
When i torte a cake and fill it with buttercream or ganache it normally gets 'squeezed' or 'oozes' out the sides of the layered cake.
I've read to put a 'dam' of buttercream first and to just refridgerate(not sure if spelt correctly) it, for 30 mins which will make it hard. Then pull it out and simply fill the inner bit of the dam.
My question is...wount the dam once it has come back upto room temperature still squeeze out? Im living in Spain so it is quite hot here, or am i using to much of a soft buttercream/ganache or just to much in general?
oh and is swiss buttercream better to use for being a stiffer consistency?
I really hope that that makes sense.
thank you so much.
In the hot months it might be wise to skip the ganache centers so that you don't have double melting problems.
However, a dam is always a good idea if you're putting something other than buttercream in the center. I use the Italian version, which is much like Swiss, I don't even bother with a piping bag, just build up the sides with my blade and then fill. You don't have to refrigerate if your dam is wide enough. Think 1/2 to 3/4 inches.
Here is a great pic of a slice, that shows a ganache center with the chocolate buttercream dam. You can see how substantial it is.
AI always use a buttercream dam. Doesn't matter if that is the only place on the cake buttercream is used.
Sofiedolan, As long as your cake has completely settled (I let my filled cakes settle overnight) the dam shouldn't ooze or bulge on the cake. During the settling process this will happen, but not after.
AThank you both ellavanilla and cai. Ella- I see what you mean by the substantial mix between the layers.looks fab!! Cai- So when you say "let the cake settle" is that without putting a cake on top.... And leaving it in the fridge?
Thank you again ladies, I can do the decorating and staking but struggle with this basic step! :-(
Ella- what is your chocolate BC recipe? I have to make a dark choc BC but every one I try turns out too light- the cake I am making is dark choc with gold fondant accents.
Thanks in advance!
Thank you both ellavanilla and cai.
Ella- I see what you mean by the substantial mix between the layers.looks fab!!
Cai- So when you say "let the cake settle" is that without putting a cake on top.... And leaving it in the fridge?
Thank you again ladies, I can do the decorating and staking but struggle with this basic step!
Once a cake is filled I put a layer of Saran Wrap over it so it doesn't dry out and let the cake just sit there for 8 - 12 hours. This allows any air bubbles, decompressing of icing and filling...to work its way out. So when the cake is iced all the icing / filling / dam stays just where it should.