Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Carving Craze


With Halloween upon us, you might be carving more than just a pumpkin!  This weekend I am planning to decorate my second fish cake for a girlfriends boys birthday party.  After baking a long rectangular cake the carving starts.  When it comes to cake carving the most important requirements include: cake density and a good cake knife.

Cake Density
I am a cake 'mix' girl and to get the right density for carving (and tier-ing) I like to add one cup of cake flour and one cup of granulated sugar to the mix along with the denoted ingredients.

Mix Ingredients
1 CakeMix
1 cup Cake Flour
+ 1 cup Granulated Sugar
The Right Density

A note about cake mixes:  as a decorator I like to focus my attention and energy on the cake decorations and not the cake itself.  Cake mixes got a bad rap back in the day when they didn't taste very good.  These days, however, they are delicious, inexpensive, quick, easy, and a life saver for cake decorators!  I do prefer to use Pillsbury over Betty Crocker though mostly because with the dough boy there is already pudding in the mix and it gives it a more moist texture.

Cake Knife
Choosing the right knife is critical to your success.  Do not use serrated steak knives since these will tear too much off your cake.  Do not use a butter knife as these have no teeth!  Stick with the professional bread/cake knife (see Cake Tools).  When I carved my first fish cake I found it was nice to have the long knife for the sides, however, the small knife worked best for the face detail area.  When carving always use gently motions with your free hand on your cake to guide the carving and preserve cake integrity.

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