Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Starburst Cake Design Tutorial

Today I was happy to be a part of CakeFu Masters and I offered a training on this cute cake & flower. If you missed out on my Cake Fu tutorial from November 20th, don't fret! Here is the step by step pictorial for you all to enjoy!

From my new line of cutters Flourishes,  I came up with this cute cake design & paper inspired flower using my Starburst cutter set.

 You can create this cake in any colour combination you wish, using any fondant you like.  For this project I wanted a pink & grey colour scheme, so I used white Fondx with a touch of Jet Black Elite to give me a light grey colour. You will also need gumpaste, I used Confectioners Choice white gumpaste

First you will need to cover your cakes.  For this project I was using round cake dummies - 5"x4" round and 6"x5" round.

Here are the tools I used in this project: fondant smoothers, sharp top edger, rolling pin, sharp knife, paint brushpalette knife, gum glue in bottle, CMC (to make glue), clear piping gel, square cutter (largest in set of 3), starburst cutter set.

First we will make the flower.  Here is a picture of what you will need to make the flower as well as the completed flower.

Roll out your gumpaste - at first using the small rolling pin, then once thin enough you can run it through the pasta machine - on mine I went to setting #4

Next you will need to attach the edible image paper.  For this project I used a paper from Lucks, but you can also print your own or use another design or brand.

To attach the paper to the gumpaste, lightly moisten the surface with either water, or here I used edible gum glue - do not over moisten, just enough for the paper to stick.  Carefully attach the paper and make sure it is secure and without air bubbles.

Next you will want to cut out all the Starburst shapes.  For this flower you will need: 21 large triangles - 3 sets of 7 pairs and 14 small triangles - 2 sets of 7 matching pairs.  These cutters are designed like puzzle pieces and fit against one another.  They are also double sided meaning you can cut a mirror image of each shape.

When cutting, try to use your paste in the most efficient manner possible to avoid waste.  See here how I've cut the shapes and paired them up as I go to make sure I have enough.  I'm also maximizing my paste by cutting the shapes close together. Be sure to trim away any jagged pieces if you get them. Tip to avoid that: keep your cutter edge clean.

You can assemble the flower once all the pieces have been cut.  It works best if the paste is slightly dry.  Make sure you have cut the gumpaste square and that it is also somewhat dry.  Add gum glue (not too much) to entire square surface.

Stage 1: Starting with the large pairs of triangles, arrange them on the square working all the way around like a star shape.

Keep working all the way around the square - I went in a counter clockwise fashion, but you can also go clockwise! ;) Just make sure to place each pair tightly against each other.

Here is stage 1 complete - a star shape which you can stop here or go on to the next stage.

Stage 2: Using the last 7 large triangles, arrange standing upright all around star at mid point of each point.

To attach: use clear piping gel painted on with paintbrush along bottom edge.

Here is a detail shot of where to paint piping gel.

When placing the pieces, be sure to have the pattern side all facing in the same direction.

Here is stage 2 completed - again note the pattern side all faces the same direction.

Stage 3: With the small triangle pairs (looks like a kite) paint 2 edges (bottom edge and top side which will attach) with piping gel and secure as a pair in between each standing piece.

Here is a detail shot of placement

Continue all the way around the star adjusting as you need until all spaces are filled.

Here is the completed flower.  Allow flower to dry before placing on cake.  To secure flower to the cake side, I used melted coating chocolate as it sets up quickly and securely.

Side pattern design: You can use the shapes to create a multitude of pattern designs.  You can space them out as I did by eye, or you can do the math and work it all out!  For me, I cut out enough triangles to go around the diameter of my cake and place them all around the cake laying on the board, spacing them out as I go.  Once I like the spacing, I will attach the shapes to the side of the cake using gum glue.

From rolled piece of gumpaste - cut out shapes as many as you require to complete your design.  Practice different configurations on a flat surface or the counter prior to attaching to the cake.

Here is the start of my chosen pattern.  For this pattern I needed 2 matching sets of the large triangles and 4 matching sets of the small triangles.

Continue the design up one full side of the cake so you can see your spacing and configuration.  Then work your way around the cake to fill in the entire design.

When using the gum glue, you do have a bit of time to adjust the pieces if required.  Instead of using your fingers to move the shapes around, try using the small palette knife or better a pair of them.  The straight edge will reduce the risk of distorting the shape.

Use your fettuccine attachment to cut the bands of gumpaste for your border.  Roll a long strip of gumpaste to setting #4, then move over to the fettuccine attachment and pass through to cut.

After rolling through the fettuccine attachment you end up with all these strips!  Perfect for borders, shoe laces, curly cues or fill on a wine crate cake!

Create a "common cut" - overlap the band and with a sharp knife cut through both layers - creates a perfect join which is practically seamless! Be sure to remove the underneath excess!

The finished cake design

Close up detail of the flower

Close up detail of the pattern

I hope you all enjoyed this mini tutorial!


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Presenting Flourishes by Lisa Bugeja

Over the past year, I have been working on a number of cutter designs to be used as side designs on cakes.  Ranging from graphic tile designs to art deco designs to damask inspired flourishes, each set can  be used in a multitude of fashions.  Some sets are created in a double edged fashion allowing for mirror image cuts of that shape. The design possibilities are practically endless!  Not only can they be used as cutters, but embossers as well.

Flourishes by Lisa Bugeja are available at Flour Confections and coming soon they will be available in Australia at Glasshouse Cakes & Supplies

For wholesale inquiries, please contact info@flourconfections.com

Here are some of our more popular designs:

Keep your eyes out as more designs are being created!


Monday, November 12, 2012

Amazing & Lovely - Mike & Lauren that is....

FINALLY! I've caught up on class blog posts! (still more stuff to do but it's a start!)

We JUST finished hosting 2 amazing talents - at the same time no less!  Mike McCarey of Mike's Amazing Cakes and Lauren Kitchens of Fancy Cakes By Lauren both made their return to Flour Confections early this month.  Not only did they team up for 2 fabulous classes, but they each taught a class on their own as well - making 4 days of sugar bliss!  This was Mike's first time in our new location, and Lauren's 2nd.  It was great to have them both back and to welcome back so many students!

Lauren started off the weekend with her What's in the Box? class - teaching students how she created the open shipping box on her winning Food Network Challenge Newlywed Cakes as well as the wonders of working with modelling chocolate.  The next day we had both at the helm teaching us all about structure.  Mike is the cake structure "guru" and guided students in the creation of stands for a high heel shoe cake and sitting dog cake - both to serve approx 25 guests.  The last structure was for Lauren's portion of the class - the waffle cake - complete with floating bottle of oozing syrup!  Our following class was all about the wonders of modelling chocolate. Students created a multitude of projects while learning all the benefits of this medium. Our last class was with Mike - creating a demon of a giant cupcake!  Students worked with live cake & buttercream to create a sculpted cupcake - then added character with modelling chocolate monster arms & eyes - so much fun and so many ways to adapt to other projects!

Here are some highlights from our classes

 Anyone who knows Lauren wouldn't be surprised by this shot! LOL!

 Making edible packing peanuts

 Building the box... 

 Putting it all together

 Mike demonstrating the shoe structure 

 Students building their waffles

 Lauren making good use of the camera

 It's all coming together....

 As Mike said "now I'm hungry for waffles!"
 Mike demonstrating how well modelling chocolate takes impressions

 It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas....
 This pic just makes me laugh..

 Lauren's smile is infectious! 
 So many projects & techniques!

 Let's carve that cake!

 Now to make arms - Mike provided a colour step by step process book to keep us on track!

Everyone personalized their monsters!

Thank you Mike & Lauren for a fabulous 4 days!