I'm a very beginner baker - doing my daughters 3rd birthday cake. She wants Dora... and I have a few questions please!!
1. Can I cover the rectangle cake in Fondant, and then pipe a dora face with Royal Icing (doing a Royal Icing border, then flooding the border with more royal icing to colour it in)?
2. If this is do-able... do I just use normal royal icing recipe like for cookies?
3. The party is at the beach (summer where I am)... how long before it all melts off and looks a mess?
4. Do I store it in the fridge overnight?
(I don't want to do dora's face in Fondant - Did Minnie Mouse last year - it was soo hard!)
Thanks so much!!!
It's certainly doable. As a "very beginner baker" have you made runouts before? If this is a new technique for you I would recommend experimenting / practising before making the cake. Perhaps you could find an online tutorial or attend a class? If you're looking for an easy way of doing this you could have an edible print made of a picture and apply that to the cake. Then you could add some decoration that you're comfortable with.
Wishing you luck,
Thanks Cher for your help!
I have made Royal Icing once... it was a disaster... poured off the side of the cookies Clearly too runny!
Unfortunately I won't have time to practice... my daughter is around and I have a 6wk old to manage as well... so this is going to be a "believe in yourself" moment! Worst case scenario if it looks awful I can go buy a Dora figurine and plonk it on a new cake.
I just watched a tutorial on 'run out' technique... looks do-able as long as the consistency of the icing is right. Can you please point me in the direction of a good (fail proof!) recipe for the outline and fill icings (I gather the outline is thicker than the fill)
Also... Do I have to do the icing on wax paper then transfer it to the cake once dry... or can I ice directly onto Fondant? (would it make the fondant colour run or anything?!)
I'm certainly not an expert on this; so if anyone with more experience would like to advise, please do so. I've done a few runouts, quite a while ago. They certainly weren't neat but they were much appreciated. WE always see our own faults, whereas others see the lovely creation, especially one's 3 year old daughter.
I'll quote the recipe for Royal Icing from "The Essential Guide to Cake Decorating" (Murdoch Books); this is my cake decorating bible:
7 egg whites
(OR 45g [1.5oz] albumen powder dissolved in315 ml [10 fl oz] water and strained)
1.75 kg (3.5 lb) pure icing sugar, sifted.
1 Put egg white or albumin in bowl of electric mixer. Stir in the icing sugar. Beat on slow speed for 4 minutes for "soft peak" or 5 minutes for "firm peak".
2 "Soft peak" will be the first consistency reached and is used for coating cakes and piping with tubes. When lifted from the bowl with a spatula the peak will stand up but droop over slightly at the tip.
3 For "firm peak" icing, continue beating until the icing has a definite peak that will not fall when shaken.
NOTE For large quantities, use a mixer. To make RI by hand, prepare a smaller quantity use 2 eggs (I can give quantity of albumin powder if required.). Place in a large bowl and add 500g (1 lb) pure icing sugar, a Tblspn at a time, beating constantly. It will take about 20 minutes to reach soft-peak consistency.. (Actually, I was taught not to BEAT but to gently paddle backwards and forwards with a knife to avoid air bubbles.)
The same book recommends using freshly beaten RI for runouts (aka flooding).
Pipe the outline with firm-peak icing, using 1 or 0 tube. Make sure all corners and joints are properly joined.
Then "let down" the icing, by stirring in water a drop at a time until the icing has the consistency of thick (double) cream. If you draw a line across the surface of the icing with a knife it should disappear by the count to 10. If using colouring, make sure it does not contain glycerine and add it before the water.
You can do the flooding with a large-holed tube or just with an icing bag made with baking paper or a ziplock bag; just snip a little bit off the corner to squeeze out the icing
They also recommend piping onto baking paper or acetate. This way you can trace the picture with the icing. You would need to let it dry thoroughly before gently transferring it onto the cake.
The book has a lot more detail but I think that covers the basics.
Of course you can pipe directly onto the fondant if you are confident. The colour shouldn't run but I can't guarantee that, especially with dark colours.
Re the weather: are you in Australia? I'm in Sydney. I think royal icing would be more stable in hot weather than any of the other icings. Try to keep it in a cool place, if possible. I'd be worried about condensation forming on it in the fridge, which may cause the icing and the fondant to dissolve somewhat.
I hope I haven't bombarded you with too much information.
Good luck and please let me know how you go; I'd love to see a photo.
Thanks SO much Cher. I'm in NZ... so basically the same ;) Will keep the cake in a chillybin/eskie I guess - all I can do really!
That is heaps of info... but I need it. I will post a picture... even if it is a picture of a smudged and melted monstrosity... or a cake from a shop with a dora doll plonked on it lol.
I think I will do normal buttercream icing for the cake itself rather than fondant, and do the Dora face on the wax paper then just sit it on top.
Thanks for the luck... I think I'll be needing it!
cher gave you great information for royal -- since you mentioned buttercream -- check this out
Thank you K8memphis; I must try a frozen buttercream transfer; it looks like a great technique.
Frozen BC transfer is probably your best bet. I have done it several times. If you have only done RI one time, and it was a disaster, I would steer away from it. You may have a cake wreck on your hands if you try it.
Make some RI when you don't have anything coming up and try to replicate an image with it. Play with consistencies. Practice!
Thanks for that re the buttercream option.
1. The suggested outline icing is store purchased - but they are in USA - I am in NZ and don't know those products or brands. Any ideas what to do there?
2. Would a buttercream image melt when outdoors in summer? I'd keep it in a chillybin with some cold packs to keep it as cool as I could... but worried the whole thing would melt before serving (about 1.5hrs in the chillybin before serving)
i would use a buttercream made with confectioner's sugar -- i'd put a recipe but it's in american measurements -- i think it will be fine especially since you are keeping it chilled --
my recipe is 2# confectioner's sugar, half pound of butter, half cup (4 oz liquid) buttermilk or cream or milk and flavoring -- and you can use less liquid for a stiffer icing and you can stiffen up your icing with cornstarch/corn flour
hope this works out for you!
K8memphis would this work OK with a Swiss meringue buttercream or would it be too soft?
You can use Swiss buttercream for this with no problem. Just be sure your hands aren't hot when you're piping or you will have a sloppy mess since the butter content is so high. :)
yes what mfeagan said -- you can put oven mitts on or gloves to keep the heat from your hand from transferring so much -- but if it is very detailed you can do some of the detail after you pop it out too -- if i was doing a dora face i would use an american buttercream made with confectioner's sugar as my first choice but doing it in swiss would work -- i would be tossing a lot of buttercream though -- once it warms up it changes --
some peeps carefully use two bags and transfer it back & forth out of the fridge -- i don't have that kind of patience myself but i would just make extra icing & toss the warm stuff
Thanks so much for all your help. Here is the end result. I did BC frozen transfer. It went really well until I snapped it in 6 pieces as I put the cake in the fridge with the image on it. Managed to piece it back together though and Miss 3 loved it. Thanks again for a your help!
Oh it won't let me upload an image from my desktop?!