Ingredients

Buttercream Frosting: There are many recipes for buttercream frosting and this is Kelly Delaney’s favorite because it is easy to make and tastes great. She highly recommends it for decorating your cakes. Frosting is also available in grocery stores, but if you have the time you may wish to try making your own.

l pound unsalted butter at room temperature
2 1⁄2 cups sugar
6 large egg whites

1. Whip butter in a 5-quart bowl of an electric mixer until pale and fluffy, about 10 minutes. Set aside.
2. Combine the sugar and egg whites in another 5-quart bowl.
3. Set the sugar and egg whites bowl over a pot of barely simmering water (ban marie) and whisk constantly until sugar is dissolved and egg whites are warm (testing like a baby’s bottle, warm to touch on your wrist).
4. Remove from stove and whip on electric mixer on high speed until mixture forms stiff peaks.
5. Switch the whip attachment to a paddle attachment. Add whipped butter, a little at a time, mixing until well incorporated. (The longer you mix it, the lighter and better the buttercream is to work with.)

Note: The frosting can be made 72 hours in advance. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Recipe courtesy of Kelly Delaney, Cakes for Occasions, 2009.

Directions

Frosting a CakeTools Needed:  Cake wheel and round board with doily or plate, baked cake, serrated knife, frosting, and spatula.
Cake wheel, spatula, round board and doily-purchase at crafts store.
Cake and frosting-make cake from scratch or use a box mix, use buttercream frosting recipe or purchase frosting at grocery store.
Serrated knife-use the one you have to cut bread1. Take your cooled, baked cake and place it on your round board w/doily. (Tip: if you are going to bring your cake to a party on a plate, frost your cake on the same plate you are going to travel with)
2. Take your serrated knife, and slice off the top of the cake so it’s level. (Tip: you’ll notice that when a cake is baked it forms a dome shape on the top, but when you purchase a cake the cake looks perfectly level. Cutting the dome top of the cake off is how to get your cake level).
3. With your serrated knife, slice the cake through the middle so that you create two layers of cake.
4. Remove the top  piece, and put frosting on the bottom piece. (Tip: we all love frosting, but you don’t want the frosting in the middle of the cake to be as thick as the cake so be generous, but not too generous).
5. It’s time to smooth the frosting out. Using your spatula, spin your cake wheel or plate and hold spatula at an angle to remove the excess frosting.
6. Place top of cake evenly on top and pat down.
7. You are now going to skim coat the cake by spinning your wheel and scraping down the sides of the cake and smoothing on top. (Tip:  As you remove frosting, clean off your spatula by wiping on the side of a bowl).
8. Clean down your board or plate by running your spatula around the bottom of the cake and spinning your wheel or plate.
9. Put your cake in the refrigerator to chill for 30-40 minutes to seal it before you frost the cake. (Tip: chilling the cake holds all the crumbs together before you apply your final coat of frosting).
10. Once your cake is chilled and set, it’s time to apply the final coat of frosting. Apply frosting right on top (2 scoops is generally good).
11. You want to coat your cake by pushing the frosting over the top of the cake. Spin your wheel to do the work and flatten the frosting over the top.
12. Look at your sides to see where you need to start frosting. Start with the spot that has the heaviest amount of frosting over the top and work around the sides.
13. When covered, stop to make sure all of the sides are covered and remove any excess frosting. Hold your spatula and spin the wheel or plate. Your wheel or plate does all the work! If there are any bare spots just reapply.
14. Your top edge does not look smooth so use your off set spatula to wipe down the edges. Start on the sides and work in. Make sure to clean your spatula in between each swipe.
15. Remove any excess frosting on the bottom to get a clean, finished look.
16. You are ready to decorate!

Courtesy of Kelly Delaney, Cakes for Occasions, 2010.

The techniques shown here on how to frost a cake are very easy to follow but Kelly recommends that you have the right equipment on hand. See below for that list.

For the cake you can make cake from scratch or use a box mix, and for the frosting you can use the buttercream frosting recipe provided here or purchase frosting at a grocery store.

Frosting a Cake
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