Help On Cake Course Procedure!?

Business By Zeyneb Updated 27 Jun 2014 , 7:26pm by BEsweetcakes

Zeyneb Posted 11 Jun 2014 , 6:11pm
post #1 of 8

Hi everyone!

 

I've searched this forum pretty hard but couldnt find any info on what Im about to ask :S

 

Im a home based cake decorator and Im currently planning on starting a home-run cake decoration course. Ive never taken a course myself so basically I do not know what sort of procedure course teachers carry out. My question : I plan on a "1 day" course. Do you decorate and teach with "pre-made cakes and pre-made ganache, frosting etc etc" , or with cakes and ganache freshly made during class? Freshly baked cakes, in my experience, have to set in the fridge for atleast a few hours until ready to handle for trimming, layering and frosting etc. Same with ganache too, although not as strictly (ganache with a less ratio of cream tends to harden quite quickly).

But still, its basically not very practical, in fact possible, to just wait for the cakes/ganache to get ready for decorating during a class ... or is it? Im presuming it wont be possible to complete the course in one day where you wait a huge amount of time for things to set! With pre-made cakes the students wont have to wait, they can just move onto decorating asap. There is a solution I have in mind though; please tell me if its logical : get the students to bake the cakes, make ganache , frosting etc during class so that they know how to make everything and gain experience but instead of using them , get them to use pre-made items (that have been made by the previous students). And thus let this process carry on in each course.  

 

Could you please help me out on this subject? Any experienced cake decorating teachers out there? :)

This subject is really bugging my mind, I could really use your advice and suggestions here ...

 

Thanks so much ;)

7 replies
MimiFix Posted 11 Jun 2014 , 6:59pm
post #2 of 8

  Quote:

Originally Posted by Zeyneb 
 

... get the students to bake the cakes, make ganache , frosting etc during class so that they know how to make everything and gain experience but instead of using them , get them to use pre-made items (that have been made by the previous students). And thus let this process carry on in each course.  

 

You're right, if you want a one day class it will be impossible to do baking and decorating in one day. Your above idea sounds good but on a practical level would be very difficult to sustain. I teach baking and business classes, and I know that structuring classes to rely on several factors (correct amount of registered students, quality of their work that gets handed off to another student, etc) is fraught with problems. 

 

Can you make it a two day class? Or for a one day class have students bring in their cakes/ganache/frosting/etc, or you provide these items, or use dummies.

dkltll Posted 11 Jun 2014 , 7:08pm
post #3 of 8

When I took decorating classes, I had to bring my own cake, icing, fondant, cake plates, tips, bags, etc.... That way we were ready to go when class started and we could actually work on decorating techniques. HTH

kyliecake Posted 12 Jun 2014 , 5:51am
post #4 of 8

we always bring in our own cake to class too.  if it is a class on making and using ganache and covering in fondant, you do that in a couple of hours.  while the ganache is setting up, students could be making flowers etc.  I personally wouldn't want to use a cake that the previous student made in class (different if the teacher has made all of them).  good luck

JWinslow Posted 12 Jun 2014 , 1:18pm
post #5 of 8

I have taken classes where you bring your own cakes (some will be better than others)  and another where the cakes were provided and a cash fee at the door was required on top of the pre-paid class amount.  it was a 3 day class.

 if your goal is to have your students learn from A-Z  ,so to speak, then I agree with MimiFix and maybe look into having the class over multiple days. 
On the other hand, if your goal is to teach just basic decorating, then I would have students either bring in their own cakes, ready to go or provide dummies to work with. 

 

You could also provide instructions and recipes that you want your students to follow for the cakes they bring in - after the class is fully paid for. 

As a student, I would prefer to work with real cake.
 

Zeyneb Posted 25 Jun 2014 , 9:11am
post #6 of 8

First of all, thank you all so much for your advice :) 

It has been quite enlightening for me on a different matter : its quite interesting to see that the cake courses run here (Im living in Istanbul, Turkey) are much different according to your examples.

Here, wether they are 1 day or multiple day courses, every single piece of equipment (cakes included) are given out to the students during the course. Its almost a rule : the student comes in empty handed! The cake course price includes basically everything.

 

What gets to me is how the 1 day courses get around to providing the edible items and getting them worked on in such a short period of time !!! (Im talking about popular 1 day courses here that are run from home, by just 1 person). Sometimes I get the urge to enroll in a course just to see how the procedure goes but frankly I'm a bit hesitant to pay around 300 - 500 dollars just for that :( And its not really an option for me to call the course owner and ask them for their secret lol! :D

Oh well, maybe I'll have to try out my method (get the students to bake the future classes cakes ) and see how that goes, and change my plans if it fails.

 

Thanks again ;)

JWinslow Posted 25 Jun 2014 , 1:21pm
post #7 of 8

Quote:

Originally Posted by Zeyneb 
 

First of all, thank you all so much for your advice :) 

It has been quite enlightening for me on a different matter : its quite interesting to see that the cake courses run here (Im living in Istanbul, Turkey) are much different according to your examples.

Here, wether they are 1 day or multiple day courses, every single piece of equipment (cakes included) are given out to the students during the course. Its almost a rule : the student comes in empty handed! The cake course price includes basically everything.

 

What gets to me is how the 1 day courses get around to providing the edible items and getting them worked on in such a short period of time !!! (Im talking about popular 1 day courses here that are run from home, by just 1 person). Sometimes I get the urge to enroll in a course just to see how the procedure goes but frankly I'm a bit hesitant to pay around 300 - 500 dollars just for that :( And its not really an option for me to call the course owner and ask them for their secret lol! :D

Oh well, maybe I'll have to try out my method (get the students to bake the future classes cakes ) and see how that goes, and change my plans if it fails.

 

Thanks again ;)


Having the students bring their cakes is a great way to cut the cost of the class - "your hook"  :)  Anyway, I hope all works out for you.  Please let us know how things went.

BEsweetcakes Posted 27 Jun 2014 , 7:26pm
post #8 of 8

Hi! 

I teach WIlton classes. I'm not sure what your goal is as far as what you want the students to learn but you might look at their student books to get an idea of how the classes go. They offer 4 courses (all 4 weeks long one day a week). I really think you need to take skill level into consideration. 

 

For example I don't allow students to take 2-4 unless they have had course 1. Course 1 starts out with teaching icing in class and discussing how to bake a good cake. Then filling pastry bags, using tips etc. The students buy all their own supplies and bring their own cake and icing to the following class. They start with cupcakes or cookies the first night to practice squeezing etc. ...

 

I have seen some zip through this course but the majority comes away with something they didn't know before and MOST really struggle with just icing a cake and not getting crumbs everywhere. Not to mention icing consistency.

 

I have been thinking about teaching my own classes so I am not constrained by the Wilton method or specific time frames. But these are actually good courses for the most part. I myself have to figure out how to collect money and how much to charge etc. if I go on my own.

 

Another idea I had was to have my own youtube videos for making icing, baking etc. just to get students prepared and skip those basics. They could practice all they needed to at home. But I would want a way only paid students could access the video's and I'm not sure how to do that. But I could probably figure it out. 

 

I would most definitely have students bring all their own supplies. I know this can be tricky because tools and things vary so greatly. But the more specific you are with supply lists the better.

 

GOOD LUCK! 

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