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Cake Design Questions and Answers

 


What is sugar syrup?
Sugar syrup might be a new idea for you in cake design, but once you start using sugar syrup, you might never make a cake without it. It might seem strange to add more sweetness to what are probably already layers of sugary cake and icing, but sugar syrup serves an important purpose in cake design.  Sugar syrup is exactly what it sounds like, sugar, water, and some type of flavouring like vanilla, almond or lemon.

You dissolve the sugar, usually about 100 grams in about ½ cup of water and then simmer the mixture on the stove for about 5 minutes. After the syrup is completely cool, you brush it on your cake layers after they come out of the oven and are still warm. Sugar syrup adds flavor, obviously, but it also adds a pleasing moistness to the finished cake.

You can also brush your cakes with sugar syrup just before icing them if the cakes have been stored in the fridge for several days.

If my chocolate has a whitish color in it, can I still use it for my cakes?
This whitish color on your chocolate is called blooming. Chocolate that has been exposed to different temperatures which in transit or sitting on the shelf . The whitish color means that the fat in the product has risen to the surface. If you are melting the chocolate for a cake or frosting, then this bloom will not be an issue at all because the fat will simply melt back into the chocolate. If you are making curls, then you might not want to use the section that has the unsightly color variation.

Is there a trick to balancing a very heavy or high cake topper?
Depending on the type of cake used in the design, a heavy or huge cake topper can be a nightmare to balance on top of a cake. If the topper is heavy and your cake is very light, like a delicate sponge, placing dowels and a cake board on top is crucial.

You can completely camouflage a cake board with more icing as long as you remember to remove it and the dowels before cutting the cake.  Even if your cake is dense, this type of foundation is recommended so that the topper does not sink or fall over. You could actually adhere the topper to a base as well to give even more stability. Remember to put the topper on the cake after it has been transported if possible to avoid any risk on route.

Can real seashells or rocks be used on a cake?
A basic rule of cake design is to never put anything on a cake that is not edible and this includes fresh flowers. The idea of real seashells or tooth shattering rocks on a cake is worrisome, but not necessarily out of line. If the bride and groom have collected an assortment of shells on a significant day in their lives and want them as accents on the cake, then make sure the shells are very well washed and place them. Just remember to remover them before cutting the cake and keeping a very good count on how many adorn the layers. There are some absolutely amazing moulds for gum paste shells and coral that can be used instead of real shells, so look into that option as well. 



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