A Beginners Tale- Part 1 (Too Long To Post All At Once)

Decorating By MaurorLess67 Updated 3 Jul 2011 , 6:03am by cheatize

MaurorLess67 Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 4:04am
post #1 of 10

Hi All- I'm breaking this up into sections- somehow it wound up being way too long to post as one thread- I'm going to look into this blogging idea (Hello- Mo- welcome to the year 2011!!! icon_redface.gif )

A Beginners Story-

This has been my experiences over the last couple of weeks; Im on my 4th cake. As a newbie/beginner I thought I would share my experiences for all other newbies-you may pick something up- and maybe for some others with more experience, you may get a chuckle out of my inexperience- Everything listed was learned by NOT doing it the right way- Just learning all this as I go.

So, let me begin by saying that EVERYTHING takes 3x longer then you think it will and it seems I use 3x the amount of product I think I will need!

The first cake I made- can I just tell you my kitchen was a complete disaster- really a disaster. I have gotten a little better, but there is still an hour of clean up involved at the end. That darn powdered sugar and buttercream has a mind of its own. Here are my suggestions in reference to that:

1)Start with a clean kitchen- dishwasher, sink- empty garbage pail (one that open with your foot is great)

2)Have plenty of paper towels, off the roll, stacked for easy access and plenty of clean dishtowels (I seem to go through 4 or 5 for one 2 - 3 tired cake-that's a lot right?)

3)I line as much as possible- lately I have been using the packing paper from Global-ha (under my mixer, on my table when torting and filling etc.)

4)Two clean sponges (one is in hot soapy water at all times)

5)I leave a large bowl of hot soapy (Dawn) water in my sink- I throw all my used utensils in as I go

6)A pump liquid soap dispenser is absolutely one of my most favorite things-never thought I would rate that over my Prada shoes!

7)A swifter wet and dry would be great to have- gotta remember to pick them up.

icon_cool.gifCLEAN AS YOU GO!!!! I can't stress this enough!

9)Take the time to clean everything before you go to bed-(IF you go to bed - cake #1, I stayed up ALL night and then had to take the day off work to finish) no matter what time it is- I even mop- this way I can enjoy my coffee before getting back to work on the cake.

Part 2 - Baking to follow tomorrow icon_smile.gif

Thanks for reading- I hope some found it helpfula nd others had a flash back to the good ole days- icon_lol.gif

Mo

9 replies
mena2002 Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 4:25am
post #2 of 10

Thanks for posting, it's good to see how other people work while making their cakes. I think people can add and take away from this and help each other find better and more efficient ways in cake decorating.

Can't wait to read the next installment icon_smile.gif

sheepmanswife Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 5:30am
post #3 of 10

I always start with a clean kitchen. I fill the sink with warm, soapy water. I try to wash as things are baking. I go in steps. Mix, wash, bake, wash, make frosting, wash, frost, wash! I live in a 100 year old farmhouse, so a dishwasher is not available to me. Can't wait to read more. Thanks for sharing.

carmijok Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 8:40am
post #4 of 10

I really have to do my cake 'thing' at night...usually after DH heads to bed. It's better that way. He's asleep while powdered sugar, buttercream and all my decorating utensils are wreaking havoc in my kitchen. Then I clean up and go to bed and I don't have to hear him complain about the mess. I like the quiet too.

Coral3 Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 8:59am
post #5 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by carmijok

I really have to do my cake 'thing' at night...usually after DH heads to bed. It's better that way. He's asleep while powdered sugar, buttercream and all my decorating utensils are wreaking havoc in my kitchen. Then I clean up and go to bed and I don't have to hear him complain about the mess. I like the quiet too.




I agree with liking the quiet...but does Hubby like listening to your mixer while trying to sleep? icon_biggrin.gif (Mine tends NOT to find the sound of a KA particularly soothing whilst laying in bed for some reason... icon_rolleyes.gif )

carmijok Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 3:40pm
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coral3

Quote:
Originally Posted by carmijok

I really have to do my cake 'thing' at night...usually after DH heads to bed. It's better that way. He's asleep while powdered sugar, buttercream and all my decorating utensils are wreaking havoc in my kitchen. Then I clean up and go to bed and I don't have to hear him complain about the mess. I like the quiet too.



I agree with liking the quiet...but does Hubby like listening to your mixer while trying to sleep? icon_biggrin.gif (Mine tends NOT to find the sound of a KA particularly soothing whilst laying in bed for some reason... icon_rolleyes.gif )




Ha ha! Fortunately my kitchen is far enough away from our bedroom that he doesn't hear anything. I can mix to my hearts content! Tell your husband your mixer is providing 'white noise' that people actually pay money for to help them sleep!

rocketmom1985 Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 4:43pm
post #7 of 10

Great tips. Everyone works differently, but you hit it on the head that powdered sugar is the bane of cake decorating. No matter what I do, I get the cr*p everywhere! I tent the KA, sift over large bowls and other stuff but I still look like a powdered sugar freak when I am done. I also wear an full apron now, and hang a towel in the lil' thingy in the waist band. I look like a fat Julia Child but it keeps me from puffing sugar all over the house when I leave the kitchen! I make the cakes and buttercream and fondant before the decorating part. I have to do it in stages or I am a wreck.

And, DH HATES when I make cakes. I wonder if he was kidding yesterday when he said one more cake and I should think about divorce???? icon_cool.gif

MaurorLess67 Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 9:01pm
post #8 of 10

Wish I had taken my own advice today-- of course waited too long to really get going on my cake- boy 4pm roles around fast! My kitchen AND my dining room are disaster areas- I should take a pic -ha!!

I hate that everything takes me so long to do-

Kinda happy with the way cake came out- its not near level enough- I really think I'm going to get the Agbay- its just so hard to justify as I will always just be a hobby baker- (I'm a HS Math teacher - the rest of the time)- but- I want to be nothing but proud of my creations - not picking at them- especially the leveling- that is so important-

I'll post a pic as soon as I get one- of course my camera died-ugh!

Mo

carmijok Posted 2 Jul 2011 , 9:41pm
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketmom1985

Great tips. Everyone works differently, but you hit it on the head that powdered sugar is the bane of cake decorating. No matter what I do, I get the cr*p everywhere! I tent the KA, sift over large bowls and other stuff but I still look like a powdered sugar freak when I am done. I also wear an full apron now, and hang a towel in the lil' thingy in the waist band. I look like a fat Julia Child but it keeps me from puffing sugar all over the house when I leave the kitchen! I make the cakes and buttercream and fondant before the decorating part. I have to do it in stages or I am a wreck.

And, DH HATES when I make cakes. I wonder if he was kidding yesterday when he said one more cake and I should think about divorce???? icon_cool.gif




Ha ha! We must be married to the same man...or at least brothers! That's why I started baking late at night! Oh..also, there is a collar that is made for KA's that is WONDERFUL when you have to pour powdered sugar...or anything into the mixer while it's running. It's called a pouring shield. Much less mess! I was lucky to get it free when DH bought me my mixer for Christmas years ago before I started caking...now I don't know what I'd do without it...well besides clean up even more powdered sugar residue that is!

cheatize Posted 3 Jul 2011 , 6:03am
post #10 of 10

Carmijok- if your pouring shield ever breaks, I'll send you mine. I tried it a few times and it's been in the cabinet ever since. lol

I hear ya on the time thing. I have found that it helps if do the prep ahead of time. I can bake the can whenever and freeze it. I can make the icing whenever and freeze it. A couple of days ahead of time, I can make the fondant.

The night before I start in earnest, I take the cakes and icing out and let them thaw while I sleep. In the morning, I can torte and fill and let them settle all afternoon. While it's settling, I make any fondant pieces that are needed. Before bed that night, I ice and smooth it. If things are going really well, I'll cover them in fondant, too. If not, I fondant the next morning and can start decorating in the afternoon.

It seems to take so dang long to get to the decorating part. Once I get to that part, it takes longer than I think it should. There have been way too many cakes that I'm rushing that last hour before delivery to finish. I clean as I go as much as I can and clean the kitchen before I stop for the day but it's that last couple of hours that I descend into chaos and the kitchen is a disaster zone.

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