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Cake Decorating Tips For Beginners

Once the cake is baked, you're ready to decorate; these tips will help you turn out a beautiful creation

Cakes come in many shapes and are decorated according to theme or whim. You can turn any cake recipe into a fun and decorative creation with these tips.

First, follow the recipe exactly. Use the proper bakeware and always pre-heat the oven.

If you have the time, bake cakes the day before you decorate. This allows the cake to firm up a little and it will be much easier to handle. You can also put it in the freezer for forty-five minutes after it has come to room temperature. It won't hurt the cake and adding icing and goodies will be a breeze.

If you are cutting a sheet cake into blocks or shapes, use a long, serrated bread knife for less mess. Use a soft pastry brush to sweep away crumbs.

Use the serrated knife to slice the rounded top of the cake. Again, use the pastry brush to gently get rid of crumbs. Then flip the cake over before adding the icing.

You can cover up the remaining crumbs by first adding a thin layer of icing and spreading with a spatula. Let the icing harden for about 10-15 minutes and then add the thicker layer. Be sure to clean the spatula first.

Before you begin the icing process, tuck a little bit of waxed paper just under the edges. This will protect the serving plate. When you're done, the paper just pulls away and you'll have very little cleanup.

Here are a few decorating ideas:

-Fruit rollups can be cut into fun shapes and used for decorating. They can really be put to good use for shapes on sheet cakes.
-Licorice ropes can be used for borders around the base of a cake.
-To make easy goalposts for a football-themed cake, use the large pretzel sticks. Cut them to size and run toothpicks horizontally through the sides to hold up the bar. Then, run toothpicks through the base of post and insert those into the cake. Extra-long and strong toothpicks work best.
-You can embed objects in a cake with this tip. Use a melon baller to carve out holes in the un-iced cake. Cover with icing, then press round objects just as gumballs or other candies into the depressions.
-Make a unique cake shape from a round cake. Just cut it in half and place the cut version face-side down. You'll have an upright half-circle that can be decorated in numerous ways: such as half-slices of fruits.
-Make lollipop cakes from a single sheet cake. When the cake is done, turn it out and use a small, round open-ended can to cut out circles. Decorate it in a fun design and stick a tongue depressor into the side.

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