baking · me myself and i

miss ene goes to cake-decorating class

Together with my colleague Miss ST, we signed up for a cake-decorating class with Sugar Inc a couple of months ago. I’ve attended a muffin-making class with the trainer, Anna Chan, before as well as a chiffon cake-making class with another instructor under the same company. This was going to be a 5-hour (!) hands-on cake-decorating class called ‘Stunning 2-Tier Cakes’ held at Anna’s home baking studio at Hougang.

The class started at 2pm on Saturday and no thanks to the erratic weather we’ve been experiencing, the rain delayed our arrival. We missed a bit of the initial instructions to bake a butter cake but no biggie. Anna was showing us how to do it and we were given the recipe but we weren’t going to do it ourselves. The point of the class was to decorate the butter cakes using fondant.

After demonstrating the cake recipe, Anna went on to show us how to prepare the buttercream icing and royal icing – both important ingredients in ‘glueing’ the fondant to the cake. There were a total of 10 participants – all ladies – and we were grouped into tables of 4.

We each took our seats at a workstation and got to work. As you can see, everything we needed was nicely laid out. There were even cups of chilled tea for each participant. Very organised – I like!

This is a pack of ‘raw fondant’ (not sure what’s the correct name!) that we used to mould, colour and shape our fondant covering for our cake. There were also loads of food colouring to choose from. Naturally, most of the ladies chose pink (there were different shades to choose from) and despite liking pink, I decided I’d make a baby-blue cake instead since I wanted to bring it home to show the boy 🙂

After loads of tugging, rolling and kneading, I finally managed to get the colours to even out (big ball of baby blue on the right). I also made a small lump of yellow fondant for decorations. The little bits of white you see at the bottom right-hand corner of the picture are icing sugar. They’re used to prevent the fondant from sticking to the glass table top and your hands. They’re also placed in plastic bags because if exposed to air, they’d harden really quickly and crack!

The butter cakes were provided for by Anna and as we were making a 2-tier cake, there were 2 pieces of butter cake – a larger one and a smaller one. In the picture above, Miss ST is slicing off the top of the smaller piece to create a flat top so that the end result will look even and nice. Not an easy task!

Once that’s done, it needs to be sliced evenly into 2 so that you can spread buttercream icing in-between. Again, this seems easier than it looks but thankfully, I discovered a new saw-like equipment (you can spot it in the picture above near the white cups) that is used to literally, saw through the cake. This will then create 100% even halves. Awesome!

After the above photo, my hands were really dirty with colour dye, icing sugar, fondant and whathaveyous so there are no photos of the process. However, what I have is….

my completed cake! Ta-dah!

Ok, I have to confess. If you look really carefully, you can see that the top-tier isn’t very smooth. In fact, I had to roll the fondant three times (3 times!!!) because I couldn’t get the ’roundish’ shape that was required to wrap the cake. I kept getting a ‘Singapore map’ shape. Sigh, damn fail. This explains why the cracks appeared because the fondant hardened by the time I wrapped it.

Also, I took the easy route and tied a big bow atop the cake instead of making a fondant rose like most others. The truth is, I really did try to make one but man, it was sooo difficult! I realise that I’m not cut out to do little delicate bits of decoration. Pfffft. So yes, I cheated and tied a bow. Lalala. Besides, I’m not a big of overly-decorated cakes and like the ‘less-is-more’ idea so there you go!

Here’s Miss ST’s cake – check out the lovely rose she made sitting prettily at the top of the cake!

And here’s a picture of the completed cakes from the rest of the participants:

 

Last but not least, this is the one that Anna did:

At 7pm, we were finally done. PHEW. Yes, 5 hours in all. At the end of it all, I can totally understand why fondant cakes or wedding cakes cost so much! There’s really quite a bit of work involved. I’m not sure if I’d ever attempt another fondant cake because it’s a lot of hard work but I guess seeing the end result and the happy faces of the recipient makes all the hard work worthwhile 🙂

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4 thoughts on “miss ene goes to cake-decorating class

  1. Lovely cake! I love your black and white and dark purple colour combi. V classy and chic. I’m not one for baby pink and pastels, so I like yours best. Maybe you could scale down next time and decorate cupcakes for an easier but just as pretty project (or have you done that already?)

    Hah, I totally do that “Lalala” thing as well when I talk. Haha.

  2. wow… looks amazing man.. *kowtow* fondant rolling is damn difficult, kudos to u!! and i really like the cherry blossom cake, wah lau, u all managed to do all that in 5 hrs??? wow. still a bit jaw dropped.

  3. Wow!! Clap clap..

    Nicely done and I really like your cake too. Understated elegance 🙂

    I aim to fiddle with fondant for D’s birthday cake next year! Haha..

    How did you like the taste of your fondant? Cos I know that they can be cloyingly sweet.

  4. Yi Lin – Aww thanks! Yes, Anna did say that we can do the fondant thingy on cupcakes as well but even that thought terrifies me. So much work lah. Phew.

    Eun – Yes! The cherry blossom cake looks so pretty eh? I’m sure you can do it if you want, oh Domestic Goddess 🙂

    Wen – Thanks for liking my cake! I feel a bit shy about it because it’s not as pretty as the rest. *blush* You should totally try a fondant cake for D’s birthday next year. I’m sure he’d be thrilled. The taste of the fondant? Truth be told, I didn’t dare to try it because I used *a lot* of icing when rolling the fondant (so that it doesn’t stick) and I didn’t wanna risk getting diabetes. Heh.

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