puffpuff Posted 13 Jul 2012 , 1:07pm
post #1 of

Hello everyone, I am learning to bake by myself, and I am a bit short of money, I want to learn how to ice and decorate a cake with buttercream and fondant, but can't afford to be baking cakes every time when I want to practice and can't get a cake dummy,so what do I do, how do I practice, and I have read that to decorate very well you need lots of practicing and I really want to know how to create beautiful cakes. What size of piping bag and tips should I buy for starters? Is a turntable necessary at this stage

5 replies
Jennifer353 Posted 13 Jul 2012 , 2:41pm
post #2 of

The internet has loads of free tutorials and videos, including on Youtube.
You can practice piping on the counter on a piece of parchment and on the sides of cake tins. When you have "decorated", scrape off the icing, put it back in your piping bag and start again!
For buying tips it depends on what you see yourself doing when you work on real cakes - a 1M tip is what's typically used for the swirl on cupcakes so you could get lots of use out of that if you like that look.
To save buying a plain tip for a start you can use the disposable piping bags, fill and cut the point off, the bigger the hole the bigger the piping lines will be so for delicate work just cut off a very small bit.
You can even pipe just using parchment/baking paper make a cone with it, fill with icing and cut off the tip as above. It works well and you can throw it out to save washing, etc!

HTH

CWR41 Posted 13 Jul 2012 , 2:57pm
post #3 of

Honestly, I don't know how anyone can give suggestions if you can't afford a cake mix. Styrofoam dummies are cheap too. Pastry bags, tips, and a turntable will cost more than a dummy or cake ingredients. You could practice on the bottom of your cake pan, but it's not the same as using real cake.

Some have said this is an expensive "hobby", and if you can't afford it to find another hobby. I personally don't think it's so expensive unless you have NO income. Maybe you could get a job at a bakery so you can get experience while being paid to learn.

HamSquad Posted 13 Jul 2012 , 5:37pm
post #4 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by puffpuff

Hello everyone, I am learning to bake by myself, and I am a bit short of money, I want to learn how to ice and decorate a cake with buttercream and fondant, but can't afford to be baking cakes every time when I want to practice and can't get a cake dummy,so what do I do, how do I practice, and I have read that to decorate very well you need lots of practicing and I really want to know how to create beautiful cakes. What size of piping bag and tips should I buy for starters? Is a turntable necessary at this stage



Hello puffpuff, last year I taught our Church Summer Camp Kids how to decorate cake with little means. Start at a dollar store, buy in the floral section round styrofoam circles. Glue 2 together with glue or wrap in saran wrap. Also purchase measure cups to make practice icing. I buy their clear chopping mats to work on when measuring ingredients or for making gumpaste flowers.

Recipe for Practice Icing
1 cup Shortening
1 teaspoon vanilla, optional
5 - 6 tablespoons water
4 cups of confectionery sugar
Beat on low to med speed until sugar is no longer lumpy, if possible buy a metal mesh strainer at the dollar store as well and sift sugar before mixing. I'm old, when I first started making cakes I had no hand mixer, I had to whip by hand. Trust me in time you will have more resources to more items. Just keep practicing. Dollar Stores have a lot of stuff! Hope this Helps
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kakeladi Posted 13 Jul 2012 , 8:42pm
post #5 of

.........Recipe for Practice Icing
1 cup Shortening
1 teaspoon vanilla, optional
5 - 6 tablespoons water
4 cups of confectionery sugar ....

this is fine but to cut down even more....eliminate the vanilla for practice icing - just as long as you are *sure!* no one is going to eat that icingicon_smile.gif

puffpuff Posted 14 Jul 2012 , 10:16pm
post #6 of

Hello everyone, thank you all so very much for your. Helpful replies. Thank you for the recipes, tips and advice, now I feel directed and confident on how to start practicing. Thank you

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