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Still on the theme of preparation, when tackling a layer cake a few simple steps at the beginning of the process can help you master getting that ‘wow’ factor. Start by putting a small dab of frosting on the cake stand underneath the first layer to stop it from sliding around. Tucking overlapping pieces of baking paper underneath the edges of the cake will keep the stand clean and can be removed when you’re all done.When it comes to assembling the layers, it’s best to use a bigger dollop of icing to spread on each layer to start with. You can always scrape some off if you’ve put too much on, whereas if you use too little you’ll end up pulling up crumbs into the icing. Make sure you spread the frosting on each of the layers just beyond the edge of the cake; this will help you when it comes to frosting around the side of the cake.
Once you’ve made your icing adding it into a piping bag is an easy way to give your cupcakes a professional looking finish. When filling up your piping bag, try folding the top over a cup to give yourself a stable base to work with and make filling the bag far less messy. Experiment with different nozzles to create different effects. When piping the icing, start in the middle then loop around the edge in a circle, then finish with a swirl on top, back towards the centre.
If you’re not feeling confident enough to use a piping bag, try smoothing the butter icing on using a spatula. Measure it out equally among the cakes first using an ice cream scoop to make sure all your cupcakes end up looking the same.
If all these tips aren’t enough, look out for another video from My Virgin Kitchen’s Barry Lewis next week, when he’ll be demonstrating how to fix cake decorating disasters. And remember, if all else fails, there’s nothing a generous dusting of icing sugar can’t fix!
For more great hints and tips from the Baking Surgery, be sure to check out our Facebook page. #TogetherWellMakeIt