I made two strawberry cakes this past week. Every time I have a chance to bake a cake, I try to experience with a new technique. The only thing constant every time I bake one is the fact that I’m reminded of how little I know and how much I still have to learn. Here is the buttercream cake I was given the opportunity to bake for a 9 year old little girl’s birthday. Her request was a vanilla cake with strawberries. I had seen this rose swirl cake on Pinterest several months ago and always wanted to try it. I created the swirls with the 1M icing tip. This also gave me the opportunity to practice on getting my buttercream smooth. I also got to practice my cake penmanship (which is a lot harder than it looks especially on the sides of cakes). I had always avoided writing on cakes as much as possible because I have seen too many times how an otherwise beautifully decorated cake can quickly go from “wow” to “meh” with poor handwriting or bad spacing. I am taking baby steps and used this technique here which begins with writing the inscription with a toothpick. I cheated by using a very small round icing tip and tracing over the letters with many little dots instead of writing in one smooth motion. I am very pleased with how the cake turned out.
Earlier in the week, I made this basket weave cake with whipped cream icing. Whipped cream is a lot harder to work with as it doesn’t hold its shape for long but it’s not as sweet as buttercream and has less calories. Disregard the overripe strawberries, it was all I had in the fridge and it was just a “practice” cake.
The first time I filled the icing bag I filled it almost to the top. I noticed after about 5 vertical lines, the icing was losing shape so I started with a new bag and only filled it about 1/4 full. This way, I was able to use the icing before it melted and didn’t have to waste any. Later I read online, how it is also helpful to keep a cold drink nearby to cool your hands with so they don’t heat the icing too much. Another great learning experience and the kids LOVED this cake!