Have you ever wondered why cakes that are frosted professionally look so perfectly smooth? How do pastry chef’s ice cakes so perfectly, without getting any crumbs into the frosting? This article will reveal a pastry chef’s secret to a perfectly frosted cake.
We will skip over baking the cake, because that is an entirely different lesson. If you don’t have a good cake recipe, there is nothing wrong with using a box mix cake. In fact, many famous restaurants actually use box mixes for cake, because the true art comes in decorating the perfect pastry.
After removing your cake from the oven, while it cools on a rack, you will need to make a simple syrup. This is simply one part sugar dissolved in one part water. For a typical cake, I will make simple syrup with a half-cup of each. You will need to heat the simple syrup gently on the stove to insure that the sugar dissolves.
Once your cake cools, you need to set it on a rotating cake stand. This looks like any cake stand you’ve ever seen, except the cake can be spun around as if it were clay on a potter’s wheel. A rotating cake stand is necessary equipment for making professional-looking cakes, and they usually cost around fifty U.S. dollars.
Using a serrated knife of at least 10 inches in length, start cutting into the side of the cake so as to divide it into two layers. However, let your cake stand do the work! Spin the cake stand with one hand as you use the other hand to cut towards the cake’s center louise’s cakes n things.
This spinning action of the cake will help you cut it into two layers more evenly. Just move your knife gently towards the center of the cake as you spin the platform.
Now that your cake is divided, brush your layers liberally with your simply syrup. This will accomplish two things: First, it will make your cake super-moist, as you are essentially soaking it in sugary water. Second, it will prevent crumbs from getting into your cake frosting at the final stage.
Once your cake layers are nicely soaked, put them in the freezer for about two hours.
When you remove the layers from the freezer, they should be stiff and hard. The water in the simple syrup should have frozen, making the cakes very stiff.
Put your cake back onto the rotating stand. Using a flat metal cake spatula, scoop up some frosting.
Take your frosting filled spatula and hold it perpendicular to the cake, gently, as you spin the cake stand. The idea here is to put a very thin layer of frosting onto the cake, the same way a painter would apply primer to a surface. We are “priming” our cake.
After you quickly put a thin layer on the sides, put a thin layer on top of the cake as well.
If you worked quickly and your cake was properly frozen when you started, the thin layer of frosting you have provided will freeze to the cake instantly. Remember, frosting is mostly fat, so when it gets ice cold, it gets rock-hard.
The frozen layer of frosting will trap any loose cake crumbs, so that you can continue to frost without crumbs messing up your job.
Finally, it’s time to frost and finish your cake. Again, we will barely move our frosting spatula at all- we want the cake stand to do all of the work. Hold your spatula still and spin the turntable, frosting the cake about a half-inch think.
Keep a glass of warm water at hand, because water repels fat (our “fat” is the frosting). After you spread your frosting, dip your spatula in warm water and smooth all the wrinkles away. The water will smooth out the frosting, making it look perfectly and professionally frosted.