Sunday, June 17, 2012

Cake Decorating Tip: Picture Transfer

During my very first day of my very first cake decorating class I learned more than I had ever hoped to learn during the entire beginners class.  What I am sharing in this blog post is the best lesson I took away from it.   In the class, we were shown how to take a picture of a snowman standing near a tree (it was January) and easily transfer that outline onto a frosted cake.  I used this idea recently when I was asked to make a Detroit Red Wings cake.  

Look at this thing!  I am not an artist so free handing all this detail on to a cake is an impossible task for me.  Luckily, I had a plan.

First, I found the above picture of the logo online so I printed a copy.  Of course, my paper was much smaller than the cake I needed to make.  So I took it to Kinkos to have it enlarged to a size that would work.  

The picture needed for the transfer must be the reverse of what you would like it to be on the cake (unless it really doesn't matter to you but in this case it was important).  I probably could have asked Kinkos to do this for me but I forgot.  Plus, it's nice to know another way since most printers do not print a reflective image without working with a photo editing program.  

So, I taped my picture to a glass window with the image facing out.  this allowed me to see the image through the paper and trace it.  

Next, cover the outline with parchment paper.

In class I was taught to use some lightly tinted edible gel (found in cake decorating supplies) but I found this that was perfect for me.  

Then I used the "gel" to duplicate/outline my image onto the parchment paper.

After competing the outline, simply flip the paper over and gently press it onto the frosted cake.  I have had better success with this when the cake has been in the freezer for a few minute - long enough to lightly freeze the frosting.  This allows the gel to stick to the cake instead of the frosting sticking to the paper.

After carefully removing the parchment paper I was left with this.  Not beautiful but much better than me trying to free hand it.

To finish the cake I simply frosted the detail over the outline.  I had very limited time to do this cake but here's the end result.  Everyone LOVED it and it only took me one hour to decorate!

A little sloppy due to lack of time but it still turned out pretty good!

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