Fondant and Gum Paste Flowers

So, I had made some roses with fondant on my own, just from watching some videos on You Tube, but I wanted to try to make more flowers, with fondant and with gum paste.  I started with Daisies.  I wanted to make a cake with daisies on it for a get-together at Mom’s with my friends Julie and Jenn.  I thought daisies would be fun and summery.  I looked on Cake Central and You Tube and found some advice and tutorials.  Here’s what I came up with my first try.

The one on the left, I painted a little green pearl dust around the center.  In the tutorials, it said it makes the daisy look more realistic.  Look at all the horrible edges though!  I learned I have to wiggle the cutter back and forth before lifting to get a good clear cut all the way around, with no jagged edges!

While making the daisies for the cake, I made some other flowers and shapes to put on some cupcakes for Julie and Jenn to take home to their kiddos.

Some flowers…

A rose…

A fish for Pete and a rubber ducky for Sam.  I made the duck by pressing fondant into my rubber duck candy mold, then coloring his beak and eye with food writers.

Some shells for Pete and Sam as they were going to see the Oregon Coast.  Made the shells by pressing fondant into candy molds, then brushing with pearl dust.

A little arrangement flowers and leaves.

Hello Kitty for Katie and a baseball for Zach!

So this is how the daisy cake turned out… It was 2 layers of devils food and 1 layer of raspberry cake, with raspberry filling.  Frosted in buttercream, with fondant ribbon at the bottom and sugar pearls, and fondant daisies on the side and top.  It tasted great!

And here are the cupcakes:

But I wasn’t happy with those flowers.  I had read that using gum paste gives a better result because you can roll it then and it hardens up, so I had to give it a try.  I started with roses.  I watched Edna’s tutorial on You Tube.  They are great!  I linked the first one, but it’s a several part series.  Watch them all if you want to learn how to make roses.  She uses some tools, but tries to keep it simple so anyone can learn.  I used her technique of using a round cutter for my petals.  So here’s my progression of the rose:

The base… You make these on the wire, then let them dry hanging upside down overnight.

The next day you add 2 petals to make the rosebud.

After that dries, you add 3 more petals for the small rose.

After that dries, you add 5 more petals for the medium rose.  You could add more petals from there, but I didn’t have a circle cutter that was bigger, and you would need bigger cutters for the next round.  I decided they were good at that point!

Next I bought a kit to help me make Calla Lillys, and I tried to make those.

They were fairly easy to make and looked really real!  I made the centers one night, and covered them in yellow sugar.  Then formed the flower the next night and put them together.  I even did some veining, which you can’t really see in the picture, but it made them look pretty realistic!

Next I worked on some yellow roses.  I bought a new ball tool, so these roses were MUCH easier to work with than the burgundy ones!

I was making these flowers to go into a fall bouquet on top of a cake for Jenny’s Mom’s birthday, so I made some more daisies, sunflowers, and some small orange flowers too.

This is finally what I came up with for the mound of flowers for the top of the cake.

I took the naked cake over to Jenny’s and we filled and decorated it there.  Here’s how the cake turned out.

I’ve learned lots while working on these flowers.  I can’t wait to make more because I got some advice on Cake Central that will help me make them even better next time!


September 14, 2010. Fondant. 3 comments.

Last Cake Class!

So Thursday we had our final cake class for the Wilton Decorating Basics Course that Jenny and I took at Michael’s.   Jenny came over the night before and we got our cakes ready.  We had to bring a cake to class already iced in buttercream.  I had an 8″ double layer peanutbutter cake with chocolate pudding and mini chocolate chip filling.  Jenny had a 9″ chocolate cake with homemade raspberry jam filling!  Yum!  We both decided to ice our cakes in white buttercream because of the designs we had chosen to do for our final project.

I wanted to do the “Ribbon Rose Rendezvous Cake”  and Jenny wanted to do a variation of the one of the cakes in our course book.  We made up all the butter cream we would need for the next day, and colored it too.  Then we laughed at Cake Wrecks for a while before she went home.  (Absolutely hilarious… check it out if you haven’t!)

On Thursday we rushed over to class and were surprised that there were only 4 of us in class!  I guess some people weren’t able to make class that night.  It was great though, because instead of Jenny and I both being squished into one table, we each had our own table!  woohoo!  Our instructor showed us how to do writing on cakes, and showed us the ribbon rose again.  Then we started practicing.  Once we practiced for a while, she said we could start decorating our cake.  I decided to use my practice roses for me cake.  Good thing too because we barely got done in time as it was!

So I started off making a mound of frosting on my cake, then placed the roses on it.  I ended up having to make a few more roses to get the design symmetrical.  Then I made little clusters of white dots on the cake.

Next I added some leaves to cover the white mound under the roses.  I wish I would have made the leaves a little bigger.  They look tiny compared to the roses!  Then I piped a quick shell boarder around the bottom and covered it with the white rosette border.

Here’s Jenny piping on her rosette border.  It looks red in the picture but her roses were actually light pink, dark pink and yellow.

Her yellow and pink rose turned out so cool!  This picture doesn’t do it justice!

Here’s her finished cake.

We both had fun with the class, and are planning on taking the other 2 classes sometime in the fall or winter when things aren’t so hectic!!

August 1, 2010. Cake, Wilton Class. 1 comment.

When are you opening a cakery??

Ok everyone keeps asking me when I’m going to open my own cake decorating business.  I guess there’s a couple ways you could go about doing that.  One would be opening an actual store front bakery.  I don’t have the money to do something like that.  Plus I can’t afford to walk away from my job into something where I don’t know how much or even if I would make any money!  So a store front bakery is out.

The other option would be to make cakes out of my home, which in Oregon they call a domestic bakery.  (More explanation of a Domestic Bakery here) You have to get a license, and your kitchen has to comply with these rules:

Domestic Kitchens


Establishments Utilizing Domestic Kitchen Facilities

(1) In addition to the provisions of OAR 603-025-0020 a food establishment in an area which is part of a domestic kitchen shall comply with the provisions of section (2) of this rule.

(2)(a) All domestic kitchen doors or openings to other rooms of the building or structure shall be kept closed during the processing, preparing, packaging, or handling of commercial foods;  My kitchen is open to the the rest of the house, there is no way to close it off from the living room, etc.

(b) No person other than the food establishment licensee, or one under the direct supervision of such licensee, shall directly engage in the processing, preparing, packaging, or handling of commercial foods and no other person shall be allowed in the domestic kitchen during such periods of operation;

(c) No infants or small children shall be allowed in the domestic kitchen during the processing, preparing, packaging, or handling of commercial foods;

(d) No pets shall be allowed in the structure or building in which the domestic kitchen is located; I have 2 indoor cats…

(e) No processing, preparing, packaging, or handling of commercial foods shall be carried on in a domestic kitchen while other domestic activities are being carried on in such domestic kitchen, including, but not limited to, family meal preparation, serving, eating, dishwashing, clothes washing and ironing, cleaning of floors, walls, cabinets and appliances, or entertaining guests;

(f) Each domestic kitchen shall include and be provided with the following:

(A) A separate closed storage space for ingredients, finished product containers, and labels for commercial foods; A separate cabinet for all my supplies… no room for that

(B) Separate refrigerated facilities for storage of perishable products or ingredients utilized in the processing, preparing, or handling of commercial foods; A separate refridgerator.. no room for that

(C) A separate storage area for household cleaning materials and other chemicals or toxic substances.

(g) Medical supplies or equipment shall not be stored or allowed in the domestic kitchen;

(h) All domestic kitchens shall be available for inspection by the department between the week-day hours of 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., and the department shall, if it deems it advisable or necessary, inspect such premises on Saturdays or holidays or other times commercial foods are being processed, prepared, packaged, or handled.

Stat. Auth.: ORS 561.190 & ORS 616.700
Stats. Implemented: ORS 616.700
Hist.: AD 978(11-72), f. 8-28-72, ef. 9-15-72; Renumbered from 603-023-0396; AD 2-1987, f. & ef. 1-30-87

So in the house I’m currently living, my kitchen will not conform to their rules, and I don’t see any way to make it that way.  Since we are just renting, I can’t really put in a separate kitchen downstairs, as it’s not our house!  Plus the expense to put in a second kitchen, even with used cabinets and appliances, would be alot, I imagine.

So at this time, there is no possible way for me to make and sell my cakes to the general public.  As it is now, I just make them and give them away to family for birthdays, baby showers, etc.  It’s fun for me to make them, and it’s fun for family and friends to receive them.  So for now, that’s all there is to my cake decorating.  Maybe if we could someday buy a house I might start selling cakes on the side while working, but I can’t see any legal way to do it at this point.  So thank you to everyone for encouraging me to start a business, but it’s just not in the cards right now.  If only I could win the lottery…  😉

July 18, 2010. Cake, Info. 4 comments.

Fletch’s Bacon cake

I wanted to make a bacon cake for Fletch’s birthday… because he likes bacon and everything is better with bacon!  Right?!?  So I had to decide… make a cake that looks like bacon, or make a cake that tastes like bacon.  I did find some recipes for maple cupcakes with bacon on top that actually sounded good, but I decided to go with making a cake that looked like bacon.  I wanted to make it look like a package of “Fletcher’s bacon” because his last name is Fletcher!  I was thinking I could to a frozen buttercream transfer to make the label, and make the bacon from fondant.  It did work pretty well, but I think the FBCT’s work best if they are placed on buttercream.

I made a 13×9 devil’s food cake and leveled it off  a couple days before.  The night of the party I iced the label using the FBCT method.  While it was in the freezer, I iced the cake with vanilla frosting and went to work on the fondant.  I mixed some reddish fondant with some white fondant and while I was mixing it, it got a marbled look, which seemed similar to a slab of bacon in the package.  So I rolled it out and put it on the cake.

I wanted an actual strip on bacon on each side, like you can see in the package of bacon.  So I made 2 strips and attached to each side.

Then I got the transfer out of the freeze and put it on the bacon.  Before I did that, I should have tried to score the fondant so it looked like slices, but I didn’t.  I tried it do it afterward and it was kind of hard! I piped a border of dots around the edge of the transfer.

At this point I should have piped on some more details to the label, like the real label has, but I was out of time, the party was already starting.  We took it over to the BBQ and Fletch loved it.  It was kind of creepy and gross looking, but it actually tasted really good and everyone got a good laugh out of it.

July 18, 2010. Birthday Cakes, Cake. Leave a comment.

Wilton Class #3

For class last week we had to bring cupcakes.  We learned how to fill cupcakes and how to make some flowers with buttercream.  I was so tired and had no energy for that class!  I made it through though, and learned some new things.

We made pom pom flowers..

We learned the shaggy mum…

We also learned the drop flower, leaves and a shell border.  You can see the drop flower in the top left of this picture..

The instructor showed us to to make the rose, but we didn’t have time to practice.  So the green rose up in the last picture was made by the instructor, not me.  I’ll get to try making them for the last class.

Jenny and I had fun.  This coming week we don’t have class, so our last class is the week after.  For the last class we have to bring a cake that’s iced and then decorate with flowers, etc in class for our final project.  I hope mine turns out cute!

July 18, 2010. Wilton Class. Leave a comment.

Frozen Buttercream Transfer (FBCT)

Sooo… while reading my favorite cake pages, I see all kinds of acronyms that I don’t understand.  One was FBCT.  Then yesterday when I was looking for ways to make a certain cake  I realized that FBCT stood for Frozen ButterCream Transfer.  It’s when you take a design/picture, put wax paper over it, then pipe the design on the wax paper, put it in the freezer, after an hour or so, pop it on your cake and peel the wax paper off.  I think it might work for the cake I want to do, but I wanted to practice first to see if I could do it.  I have frosting leftover in the fridge from the 4th of July still… I always throw all my leftover icing tubes into the fridge thinking I might use them on the next project, but what usually happens is I find them taking up room in there a couple weeks later and throw all the icing out.  I had this brilliant idea today to use some of that old icing to practice the frozen buttercream transfer!

I grabbed a Hello Kitty coloring book I have… (yes, I have coloring books, and yes, I love Hello Kitty…) and found a picture that I wanted to try the transfer with.

I covered it with wax paper and started piping in the black lines with some black wilton frosting in a tube that I had bought to do the ladybugs with.  I should have taken pictures as I was doing this part, but I got so into it, I didn’t stop and pick up the camera!  After the black I did the red, blue and finished with the white.  Then I put it in the freezer for 10-15 minutes to harden up a little.  Then I put a layer of white over the whole backside to even it out.  Then back into the freezer for an hour or so.

While I was waiting, I remembered a trick I read about for practicing decorating.  Instead of making a cake to practice on, this lady said she just turned the cake pan over and decorated the cake pan.  Genius!  I don’t have to worry about what to do with the cake, and I’m only wasting frosting that I was going to throw away anyway!!  So I frosted the pan white, and added a red border at the bottom with black dots.  (We practiced dots in class last week ) As you can see in the pictures that follow, I didn’t quite have enough frosting to go all the way around the sides, so I just decorated half the side and made sure that was the front of the “cake”.

When the FBCT was ready, I took it out of the freezer, plopped it on the “cake” and peeled off the wax paper.  Pretty easy!  I was a little messy when I was doing the white icing on hello kitty’s face.  I knew I went into the black and I could have fixed it, but I just kept going since it was only a practice one.  So you can see how she’s messy by her nose.  That was completely my fault.

I think normally you would ice around the edge of the transfer so it’s not so obvious that it’s a half inch taller than the icing on the top of the cake, but I was pretty much out of white icing, so I couldn’t try.  I’m leaving it sit out for a while to see what happens as the transfer thaws.  I’ve read that it won’t run and it just turns soft like regular icing again.  We’ll see!  This was a cool technique to find and I’m glad I got to try it out!  I can see some uses for it in the future.  It’s similar to the piping gel transfer technique we learned in class last week, but with that you just transfer the outline onto your cake, then fill it in on the cake.  This way you do the whole thing off the cake, freeze, then put onto the cake.  Now to go wash off that cake pan…  At least I don’t have a whole cake to eat!!

July 13, 2010. Practice Cakes. 4 comments.

Cupcakes for Sky

Sky, a friend at work, wanted me to make some cupcakes for her friends daughter’s birthday.  I think she’s 3?  She wanted ladybugs or butterflies, but something cute and girly.  I looked through a book (Hello, Cupcake) Mom bought me a while back that  had some cute cupcake ideas.  I came up with the sunflowers with ladybugs, and the candy melt butterflies in pastels.

The sunflowers turned out really cute!

The centers of the sunflowers are oreos, and the lady bugs are M&M’s.

The butterflies I made a couple days early.  When I went to put them on the cupcakes last night, it was too warm!  It was a big melty mess!  I popped them in the freezer overnight, and they look pretty good this morning.  But note to self: don’t try to work with chocolate/candy melts when it’s sooooo hot!  Never again!

I hope they last until Sky can get them to the party!  With this hot weather, I’m a little worried!  At least they will taste good no matter what!  But I hope they stay cute long enough to be enjoyed!

July 9, 2010. Birthday Cakes, Cupcakes. Leave a comment.

Wilton Class #2

For the second class we had to bring in a 1 layer 8 inch cake, we had to make a couple batches of frosting, and all our supplies, in order to decorate the cake.  Jenny and I had so much stuff!  Luckily we got a table together again.  We started out by leveling our cake and torting it.  Then put in a dam and added filling.  Things were going good up until this point, then I realized I hadn’t taken the top layer off my cake, I had put the filling on the top layer!  Jenny was able to help me use the cake lifter to lift the top off, put it on the cake board, then flip the bottom layer onto the top!  Crisis averted!

Next we filled our icing bag so we could ice the cake.  While trying to fill it, I dropped a big glop of icing on my lap!  I was wearing my apron though, so it was ok!  And really funny!  Then we iced our cakes.  Jenny and I had made a light violet color.

Next we had to practice making zigzags and dots on our practice board.

Today we were trying a piping gel transfer.  We put wax paper over a picture of a cupcake and traced it with piping gel.  Then we put the gel side of the wax paper on our cake and pressed down…

Then you remove the wax paper, and voila!  The image is on the cake for you to till in with icing…

We filled in the image, and added some cute decorations.  Then piped a zigzag border around the bottom.  The finished product…

And Jenny’s cake.  They both turned out really cute!

It was a little hot and crowded in the room, but all in all it was fun.  I think Jenny is starting to see why I like decorating!  We’re even talking about taking the next class! Woohoo!

July 9, 2010. Cake, Wilton Class. 2 comments.

Getting ready for Wilton Class #2

Tomorrow is our second Wilton cake decorating class.  Since Jenny’s kitchen is all torn up (being remodeled after water damage) she came over here to bake cakes and make frosting with me!  Hooray!  I needed to make some cupcakes for a friend at work, so I made those tonight too, plus we are going to use the extra cupcakes for our 3rd class next week.

So I started before Jenny got here by mixing up and baking some vanilla cupcakes.  When Jenny got here, I made her make our cakes for class.  We are each supposed to bring 1 layer 8 inch cake.  So we mixed up some vanilla cake and put it into my new 8 inch pans.  They turned out nice!

While the cakes were baking, we started working on the frosting.  I have to admit, I usually buy the Wilton frosting pre-made because it’s always the right consistency and easy to decorate with.  So I was a little nervous about making frosting.  We followed their directions though, and it turned out good, I think.  We made a double batch of thin consistency and tinted it a light violet color to ice the cake with, and we made a double batch of medium consistency and left half white and half teal.  You’ll see tomorrow what we do with that!

While we were baking, we snacked on some raspberries from Green Villa… YUM!

When the cakes were done, we made a batch of devil’s food cupcakes and I taught Jenny the trick of putting the batter into a baggie and using the baggie to fill the cupcakes.  It works like a charm!

We had a good time in the kitchen….

And we got all our stuff packed up for class tomorrow…

I also got the cupcakes ready for Sky.  I will decorate those tomorrow before class!

I hope class goes well tomorrow!  I can’t imagine all of us in that tiny room when it’s 90 degrees outside!  We’re going to be melting… I hope our cakes don’t!

July 7, 2010. Wilton Class. 3 comments.

4th of July!

I made some cupcakes for the 4th of July.  I found some cute cupcake papers with flags at Michael’s and some cute star decorations at Capt. Albert Goodthings.  I wanted to make white cupcakes so the designs on the papers would should up good, but I didn’t want them to be boring white… so I dyed some of the batter red and some blue and layered it in the middle of the cupcakes.

Then I just decorated them with Betty Crocker vanilla frosting, the star sprinkles, and the flags.  I took a dozen to work, and a dozen are going to my Dad’s BBQ.

A couple months ago I bought a “Big Top Cupcake Pan”, but I hadn’t used it yet.  So I baked a peanut butter cupcake and filled it with chocolate pudding.  Then iced it with buttercream and fondant stars.  It turned out pretty cute.  I can’t wait to taste it!

Happy 4th of July Everyone!!

July 4, 2010. Cake, Cupcakes, Holiday. Leave a comment.

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