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Making my own amazing birthday cake - help me!(6 Posts)
I am a reasonable baker and can knock up a decent sponge cake. I have a birthday with a ZERO in it coming up and I want to make my own cake. I have some decorating ideas, but I would like tips from those of you more practised than I am at celebration cakes.
What is the best type of sponge cake and filing to do?
Can I just do my usual sponge mixture or should I adjust it in any way?
I'm going to use ready to roll fondant icing - any tips? Should I use jam to get it to stick nicely to the cake?
I don't want to be sweating over this on the morning of my birthday, so how long will a sponge cake stay fresh? They usually never make it through the day in my house!
I am super shit at writing in icing but I'd like to put my name on the cake - other than cutting letters out of coloured fondant icing - are there any other ways of doing a name on a cake?
Normal sponge is fine unless you are carving, in which case a Madeira sponge is better.
Use buttercream to do a smooth coat under the icing or it'll be lumpy and bumpy. It's a bit of an art getting a smooth layer - chill it in the fridge before you put the fondant icing on. Get an icing smoother if you can. Use cornflour to prevent the fondant sticking not icing sugar (icing sugar dries it out and makes it crack). You can use a tiny bit of water painted on to stick small icing items on with as it makes the icing sticky. Or get some edible glue.
I have lots of sets of letter cutters but you can also get letter stamps you can stamp into icing, or edible pens you can write on an icing plaque with (make sure the icing is dried out first). Or you can water down paste food colour with a smidge of vodka and use it with a paintbrush like paint.
Oh, a fully decorated sponge cake will be good for at least a week usually. You can make icing decorations way in advance and leave them to dry out, in fact it's usually a lot easier to do this
Oh wow, thank you Petulia. I'm going to order an icing smoother.
Yes, definitely crumb coat it first with buttercream. Have a look on YouTube - there are loads of videos on this sort of thing.
With the fondant, don't roll it out too thin. I used to, because I don't really like fondant that much and find it a bit sickly, but a few years of making birthday cakes for the dc has taught me that if it's a bit thicker, it's easier to work with!
If you want to make a number cake, Wilton does a great set of pans that you can alter make any letter or number.
www.hobbycraft.co.uk/wilton-countless-celebrations-letter-and-number-cake-pan-set/614689-1000?glCountry=GB&gclid=Cj0KCQjwkIzlBRDzARIsABgXqV-s0u417nLRMuc2tw_W_O9y9T1dKzI7VUdAoOzo68Au6aeFMYUOYk0aAlPcEALw_wcB&gclsrc=aw.ds (but cheaper on Amazon!)
Probably not worth it if you're only doing one cake, but great if you regularly make birthday cakes!
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