Sharon Zambito's Smoothing Method?????.....

Decorating By Mikel79 Updated 28 Feb 2013 , 3:46pm by shebaben

Mikel79 Posted 23 Apr 2011 , 4:54pm
post #1 of 32

Hi Cakers!

Instead of Pming Sharing directly, I am hoping others have found a solution to my problem. Sharon, of course please respond if you are reading! =)

I think I got the icing making down. Getting it on the cake, check! Smoothing it out, check! The spatula marks on the top of the cake, NO CHECK!!! For those of yall familiar with Sharons icing method she takes the excess icing off the top edge of the cake with a small spatula. She holds it horizontal to the cake and scrapes to the middle of the cake. (You have to get her BC DVD if you do not have it!!!!)

For one reason or another, the top of my cakes are left with spatula marks. How can I make them go away? I have smoothed, and smoothed and smoothed my heart out. But, they will not go away.

Any suggestions?

BTW Sharon just got your Book Stacking cake. Fabulous!!!!!

Thanks

Michael

31 replies
tiggy2 Posted 23 Apr 2011 , 5:17pm
post #2 of 32

Are you using a hot spatuala to remove the icing then smoothing it with viva paper towel and a fondant smoother? If that isn't working you may be letting it crust too long bdfore smoothing.

Bakingangel Posted 23 Apr 2011 , 5:40pm
post #3 of 32

After you level with the spatula and smooth with the paper towel, if the lines are still showing, use the flat side of the heated spatula, then smooth with card stock and smoother. Hope that helps.

BakerAnn Posted 23 Apr 2011 , 6:53pm
post #4 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikel79

Hi Cakers!

Instead of Pming Sharing directly, I am hoping others have found a solution to my problem. Sharon, of course please respond if you are reading! =)

I think I got the icing making down. Getting it on the cake, check! Smoothing it out, check! The spatula marks on the top of the cake, NO CHECK!!! For those of yall familiar with Sharons icing method she takes the excess icing off the top edge of the cake with a small spatula. She holds it horizontal to the cake and scrapes to the middle of the cake. (You have to get her BC DVD if you do not have it!!!!)

For one reason or another, the top of my cakes are left with spatula marks. How can I make them go away? I have smoothed, and smoothed and smoothed my heart out. But, they will not go away.

Any suggestions?

BTW Sharon just got your Book Stacking cake. Fabulous!!!!!

Thanks

Michael




How can I find Sharon's Buttercream DVD?

bostonterrierlady Posted 23 Apr 2011 , 9:28pm
post #5 of 32

sugaredproductions.com

KarolynAndrea Posted 23 Apr 2011 , 9:51pm
post #6 of 32

I have all her DVD's. I'm pretty good at the buttercream now. I don't smooth the top with the paper towel. Instead, I dip my small angled spat in the hot water (don't wipe off the water) and use the water to smooth everything out. That's what works for me. I get it pretty smooth that way. And Sharon is the best! <3 her. icon_smile.gif

Mikel79 Posted 23 Apr 2011 , 11:48pm
post #7 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggy2

Are you using a hot spatuala to remove the icing then smoothing it with viva paper towel and a fondant smoother? If that isn't working you may be letting it crust too long bdfore smoothing.





By the time I get to the top of the cake, it has been on there maybe 20 minutes. You think this is to long??

Thanks,

Michael

cakegirl1973 Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 12:26am
post #8 of 32

[quote="Mikel79"]

Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggy2


By the time I get to the top of the cake, it has been on there maybe 20 minutes. You think this is to long??

Thanks,

Michael




I don't think it has crusted too long. It takes me at least that long around the sides. Could your spatula not be hot enough when you are scraping the icing from the top side to the top center of the cake? Just a thought.

Mikel79 Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 12:45am
post #9 of 32

[/quote]

I don't think it has crusted too long. It takes me at least that long around the sides. Could your spatula not be hot enough when you are scraping the icing from the top side to the top center of the cake? Just a thought.[/quote]

Maybe. I dip the spatula in the hot water and dry it completly. Someone above mentioned keeping the spatula wet while I take the excess off. Maybe that will help out.

Michael

BakerAnn Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 12:49am
post #10 of 32

Thank you for the information, bostonterrier lady. I have just reviewed and decided on several of Sharon's DVDs.

Just before reading this thread I was looking at the Jennifer Dontz DVD called The Easy And Tasty Way To Perfect Fondant and am wondering whether to order hers or Sharon's. Matter of fact I think I'll start a thread instead of hijacking this one!

Thanks again! icon_smile.gif

tiggy2 Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 3:40am
post #11 of 32

I don't think you have to dry it completely. Dip it in the boiling wter and just wipe it off. Are you using Sharon's recipe or a different one?

tryingcake Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 4:07am
post #12 of 32

I've been using the hot knife method for years (long before I heard of Sharon Z - and I also love her, btw). When I was teaching, I found most people do NOT have the hot knife truly HOT.

It has to be just about boiling hot for best results. At least hot enough that any icing on the spatula falls off from dipping in the hot water in less than a second. If it doesn't, it's simply not hot enough. if your sink doesn't produce water this hot, boil water and use that.

Also, I never wipe off my knife and I never have issues. Not sure why people do that. I guess mine is so hot I don't have drips?

ajwonka Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 2:25pm
post #13 of 32

I use a hot plate to keep my water super hot!

Mikel79 Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 2:26pm
post #14 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by tiggy2

I don't think you have to dry it completely. Dip it in the boiling wter and just wipe it off. Are you using Sharon's recipe or a different one?




Hi Tiggy....

Yes, I use Sharon's recipe for the icing. I think that myable I am not getting my spatula really hot. My water is on a hot plate, but not boiling. I have a cake next week that I am going to try not wiping the spatula and keep the water really hot.

Thanks folks

Sangriacupcake Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 2:52pm
post #15 of 32

I use Sharon's recipe and techniques, and I love them both! I do a final smoothing on top, first with Viva, then with her copy paper trick. It's amazing what a difference the once over with copy paper makes. So smoooooooooooooth!

Oops--edit for clarity.

Mikel79 Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 4:05pm
post #16 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sangriacupcake

I use Sharon's recipe and techniques, and I love them both! I do a final smoothing on top, first with Viva, then with her copy paper trick. It's amazing what a difference the once over with copy paper makes. So smoooooooooooooth!

Oops--edit for clarity.





Same Here. But, the spatula marks will not go away??

Michael

Sangriacupcake Posted 24 Apr 2011 , 5:03pm
post #17 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikel79

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sangriacupcake

I use Sharon's recipe and techniques, and I love them both! I do a final smoothing on top, first with Viva, then with her copy paper trick. It's amazing what a difference the once over with copy paper makes. So smoooooooooooooth!

Oops--edit for clarity.




Same Here. But, the spatula marks will not go away??

Michael




Well, I was no help! icon_sad.gif

Hmmm...my spatula marks do go away, but perhaps you're seeing something that I'm not? Maybe you're after a level of perfection that that I can't even see with my middle-aged eyes? icon_lol.gif Your cakes certainly look very smooth in your pics.

I can tell you that I use near boiling water to heat my knife and I dry it. I smooth my sides in about 10 minutes, because I'm training myself to work quickly.

Mikel79 Posted 25 Apr 2011 , 12:18am
post #18 of 32

Sangriacupcake

Thank you. Part of the reason I have those fondant borders is to cover up the spatula marks.

Thanks for the kind words!!

Michael

Mikel79 Posted 25 Apr 2011 , 1:14pm
post #19 of 32

Sharon, if you are reading this. Penny for your thoughts.....=)


Michael

Mb20fan Posted 25 Apr 2011 , 9:38pm
post #20 of 32

Sharon just did an online tutorial last week and she stressed to wipe after each dip in the hot water. She mentioned that depending on the color of your icing (obviously this won't apply to pure white icing), the heat or the hot moisture will cause your icing to discolor - perhaps turn a shade darker and you don't want that to happen. I believe she also mentioned that boiling water is too hot.

HIGHLY recommend "Perfecting the Art of Buttercream". She shows you EVERYTHING and walks you through each process - she doesn't break away and you come back to a perfectly finished cake...this is why her videos are so long - because she really covers so much. And this isn't a DVD that you will watch just once...it's something to keep as a reference for the long haul. JMO.

Mikel79 Posted 25 Apr 2011 , 9:59pm
post #21 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mb20fan

Sharon just did an online tutorial last week and she stressed to wipe after each dip in the hot water. She mentioned that depending on the color of your icing (obviously this won't apply to pure white icing), the heat or the hot moisture will cause your icing to discolor - perhaps turn a shade darker and you don't want that to happen. I believe she also mentioned that boiling water is too hot.

HIGHLY recommend "Perfecting the Art of Buttercream". She shows you EVERYTHING and walks you through each process - she doesn't break away and you come back to a perfectly finished cake...this is why her videos are so long - because she really covers so much. And this isn't a DVD that you will watch just once...it's something to keep as a reference for the long haul. JMO.




Thx MB! Yes, her BC DVD is truly amazing!!

sugarshack Posted 25 Apr 2011 , 10:51pm
post #22 of 32

hey Mikel,

As far as the spatula marks along the outer edge, what I do is, after all the top excess icing is gone, is to take the super hot spatula and go back over the outer 2 inches or so of the top of the cake, trying to get it as smooth as possible with the heat, so I don't have to aply much pressure along that top outer edge with my hands or the smoother when I go in for the final smoothing.

HTH!

TinkerCakes Posted 25 Apr 2011 , 11:14pm
post #23 of 32

Off topic......what the heck is "bump", I've seen it alot. icon_smile.gif

Mb20fan Posted 26 Apr 2011 , 12:05am
post #24 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason-Lisa

Off topic......what the heck is "bump", I've seen it alot. icon_smile.gif



When you see "bump", it just means that someone is trying to wake the thread up - move it back to the front page. After a while with no new replies, the thread will get lost in the shuffle. When someone adds a new reply, the thread gets "bumped" up the list of current topics in the hopes that it peaks new or more interest. HTH.

TinkerCakes Posted 26 Apr 2011 , 12:09am
post #25 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mb20fan

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason-Lisa

Off topic......what the heck is "bump", I've seen it alot. icon_smile.gif


When you see "bump", it just means that someone is trying to wake the thread up - move it back to the front page. After a while with no new replies, the thread will get lost in the shuffle. When someone adds a new reply, the thread gets "bumped" up the list of current topics in the hopes that it peaks new or more interest. HTH.




Thanks!!!

Mb20fan Posted 26 Apr 2011 , 12:19am
post #26 of 32

No problem....

Mikel79 Posted 26 Apr 2011 , 12:54am
post #27 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by sugarshack

hey Mikel,

As far as the spatula marks along the outer edge, what I do is, after all the top excess icing is gone, is to take the super hot spatula and go back over the outer 2 inches or so of the top of the cake, trying to get it as smooth as possible with the heat, so I don't have to aply much pressure along that top outer edge with my hands or the smoother when I go in for the final smoothing.

Sharon thank you so much!!! Your word is GOLD to me. I will give that a try this weekend!!

Everyone else, thank you for all the replies!!

Thanks again!!

Michael

HTH!


sugarshack Posted 26 Apr 2011 , 1:44am
post #28 of 32

I think I demo what i referred to in the dvd... will have to look at it to be sure

labmom Posted 26 Apr 2011 , 2:11am
post #29 of 32

it depends on what icing i am using. Butter cream can be smoothed with the viva (only viva) paper towel or I don't use the hot knife and water what I use is a spray bottle of water I mist the cake where i am going to smooth it. the water makes the icing like glass. super smooth. the water doesn't hurt anything because it is just Misted! Easy to take with me when I set up a cake for those thumbs that slip. But my easy and favorite is the viva. looks like fondant when smooth.

Mikel79 Posted 26 Apr 2011 , 11:18am
post #30 of 32
Quote:
Originally Posted by labmom

it depends on what icing i am using. Butter cream can be smoothed with the viva (only viva) paper towel or I don't use the hot knife and water what I use is a spray bottle of water I mist the cake where i am going to smooth it. the water makes the icing like glass. super smooth. the water doesn't hurt anything because it is just Misted! Easy to take with me when I set up a cake for those thumbs that slip. But my easy and favorite is the viva. looks like fondant when smooth.




I thought about doing the mist thing before. I was afraid to try it. Glad to hear you have good results with this. I might try this along with Sharon's tips.

Thanks folks
Michael

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