Off the bucket list is cake decorating with the Little Weeds. It had to be done and today it was. Cake decorating is pretty difficult, and so unlike Cake Boss, where everything comes out perfect the first time. From a bag of confectioner’s sugar, and some egg white came a nice creamy paste, which was then coloured with food colouring. Overall the flavour of home made icing is far better than the commercial icing we used to buy in plastic containers. It is not as sweet. The Little Weeds liked it, but their standards are quite low to begin with. On this cake we tried blue, red, green, yellow and purple colours, because we have never done this before. While the results were closer to abstract art than Cake Boss, it was sufficient to take it off my bucket list.
Mickey Mouse cake mould with our experimental home made icing. It tasted great and was easy to make.
What you need:
- 500 mg package of icing sugar, $1.80CAD
- 2 egg whites: separate the egg white from the egg yolk using two containers. Crack the eggs into one container, then drain the egg whites into the other container. Do each egg separately. 12 eggs $2.80CAD
- cream of tartar, 1/2 tsp: This is a powder I bought in a small but relatively expensive container. You do not need much, so a container will last a long time. $5.00CAD
- food colouring: I bought red, yellow, green and blue. I suppose you could mix yellow and blue to make green, but it was at the grocery store so I bought it. Each 28ml bottle costs about $1.80CAD. You can review your colour theory at the same time.
- vanilla extract, 1/2 tsp: I used pure, $4.50CAD. You only need a little.
The icing recipe I used was a 500gm bag of confectioner’s sugar or icing sugar. The recipe called for a 16 oz bag, which is not metric and therefore needed my friend Google to translate (into 469gm or ~500gm), 1/2 tsp cream of tartar, 2 egg whites (What to do with the yolks, they are still in the ‘fridge) and a bit of 1/2 tsp vanilla extract. Sift the drys first, then using a blender on low blend the liquids in, and then blend on medium. I would have thought that the icing would come out too dry because we did not add liquid, but the egg white served this purpose. It turned out pretty well, though too much for one cake. I have a good 250 gm of icing still in the ‘fridge. The egg yolks were microwaved on medium and eaten with bread.
Starting with white, add three drops of red and one drop of blue to get purple icing. Baby blue only needs one drop of blue, so we added more for a deeper blue. Pink came out of a couple drops of red. It never really became deep red. Green was mint coloured. Yellow was a consistent yellow with only one drop. After 10 minutes the icing solidified, making the addition of extra colours much easier.
Different colours of cake icing. Make a batch of white icing and add colouring. It was easy.
Today we started with a Mickey Mouse cake pan. I was advised to use Pam oil spray, but found the 400 ml bottle expensive at $5.00CAD. Instead I tried oil and flour, which failed. Today I was successful with shortening and flour. Nothing stuck. Turning the cake over was challenging. Next time I will use a board underneath the pan.
Of course there was a huge amount of dish washing after all the excitement died down and the cake was iced. This is the solitary that most parents walk, the last hurrah and ending. We walk this alone, but happily.