Does Anyone Not Make A Stiff Buttercream Dam Before Filling?

Decorating By kileyscakes Updated 20 Oct 2010 , 4:14am by Normita

kileyscakes Posted 19 Aug 2010 , 6:52pm
post #1 of 16

Hi, I just was wondering if there is anyone out there that doesn't make stiff icing to pipe around the edges before the filling. I usually do make a stiff dam, but I just dread taking the time and muscle to stiffen up icing for such a small detail, I watch the shows on tv and it seems that they just use regular icing in the layers, and I hardly ever see someone piping a dam? Or if they are piping a damn it isn't stiff icing. I am just curious as to what steps to take to avoid doing the dam, or if I can at all.
TIA
Kiley

15 replies
dchockeyguy Posted 19 Aug 2010 , 7:31pm
post #2 of 16

It varies for me. If i'm just putting buttercream on the cake, and nothing else, I often don't dam it. Sometimes I wish I had, but usually I don't. Tonight, though, I'm doing a cake with a raspberry filling, and I'll be damming that one up!

KayMc Posted 19 Aug 2010 , 7:49pm
post #3 of 16

I've not stiffened it up if I was just using buttercream frosting as the filling. If you're using a lot of filling, though, I think the stiff dam is still the best way to go.

janeoxo Posted 19 Aug 2010 , 8:18pm
post #4 of 16

Never dam with buttercream, jam or both filling.

Cookies4kids Posted 19 Aug 2010 , 9:27pm
post #5 of 16

I also try to avoid damning whenever possible, but there have been times when I have regreted doing so. Make sure your filling is thick enough and keep it far enough from the edges of the cake. I do that seam first when I start frosting the outside, and this usually keeps things in place.

cake-angel Posted 19 Aug 2010 , 11:24pm
post #6 of 16

I use a dam if I am using fillings other than buttercream. I use a medium consistancy for the dam. I just remove the amount I need when I reach that consistancy and then continue mixing the icing down to the thin consistancy for frosting the cake. I don't find it any extra work to do it this way.

nonilm Posted 20 Aug 2010 , 12:55am
post #7 of 16

I do not use a stiff dam and have never had a bulge problem (knocking on wood). I only use regular buttercream with a Wilton 12 tip for jam and pudding fillings. No dam for plain buttercream.

Like others have said I think it depends on the thickness of your filling layer.

Rose_N_Crantz Posted 20 Aug 2010 , 1:20am
post #8 of 16

I don't make a stiff dam either, but I do let it settle overnight with a floor tile sitting on it, like SugarShack suggests in her video. I've had the best results when I let it settle like that.

KoryAK Posted 20 Aug 2010 , 3:35am
post #9 of 16

No dam here. Almost ever. I use preserves, ganache, or mousses (whipped cream and pudding powder type mainly) as fillings and have no problems. I also use an all-butter (SMBC) icing and chill the cakes until delivery.

Mama_Mias_Cakes Posted 20 Aug 2010 , 7:28am
post #10 of 16

I don't use a dam with buttercream fillings. I do with all other fillings. I also just remove a bit of my buttercream as I am making it when it is a stiff consistency then finish making it thin to ice.

leily Posted 20 Aug 2010 , 11:24am
post #11 of 16

I use a dam of buttercream, but it's the same icing i decorate the cake with. I don't thicken it up, i haven't found the need to do that. I also dont' let my dakes settle, i do the dam, put in the filling then set the top layer on. Push down gently and some of the dam comes out, but i smooth it out so it looks like a crumb coat. Then add on my icing and decorate away.

LindaF144a Posted 20 Aug 2010 , 11:30am
post #12 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rose_N_Crantz

I don't make a stiff dam either, but I do let it settle overnight with a floor tile sitting on it, like SugarShack suggests in her video. I've had the best results when I let it settle like that.




I do the same as Rose. I don't make my buttercream stiffer either and I, so far, have only used SMBC to frost my cakes with. I then put a dam around the edge about 3/8 to 1/2 inch inside the cake. I then put in my filling and put the top layer of the cake in place.

I then WRAP my cake in saran wrap like LeahS has said to do. My feeling is this helps to push the dam to the inside and fill out to the edge of the cake, but not go beyond the day cake edge. I then place a tile on top and wait an hour.

I suppose thinking about it, seeing how I put the dam inside the edge and not to the edge of the cake that I don't need to wrap it. I guess it's just insurance to make sure the filling doesn't squish all the way out.

heroes Posted 8 Oct 2010 , 8:44am
post #13 of 16

Im sorry for pinching your post but can I ask what a dam is and what is it used for? xx

marlala2 Posted 20 Oct 2010 , 3:47am
post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by heroes

Im sorry for pinching your post but can I ask what a dam is and what is it used for? xx




It's piped frosting (usually buttercream) that you apply all around the top edge of the lower layer of cake when using a jam, or pudding filling (anything but buttercream really). It keeps the filling from bulging out after the top layer is applyed. I hope this helps! If not this is a great video about torting, and filling cake.


mbark Posted 20 Oct 2010 , 3:56am
post #15 of 16

I also just use regular buttercream for my dam. The couple of time I have not used a dam I have regretted it...

Normita Posted 20 Oct 2010 , 4:14am
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by KoryAK

No dam here. Almost ever. I use preserves, ganache, or mousses (whipped cream and pudding powder type mainly) as fillings and have no problems. I also use an all-butter (SMBC) icing and chill the cakes until delivery.




I'm with Kory....I NEVER dam. I always use fruit sleeve fillings or bettercreme fillings. I have never had any problems, and I too use SMBC. But remember, what works for one person may not work for the other. I started damming my cakes and then I decided not too....and they have been fine =)

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