Lovely Little Cakes

"Cake is often the centerpiece at any Celebration"
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Tonight the Young Women discovered a few fun and easy cake decorating ideas, with items they may already have in their own cupboards. Some of those were marshmallow flowers, faux fondant cutouts (made with Airheads and micro cookie cutters), and designs in chocolate. There was also some instruction of various frosting techniques.
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It was so fun to see their creative hands at work. At the end of the night they each went home with a "Lovely Little Cake" to share. Or keep all to themselves! They all did such a wonderful job. I thought each cake was absolutly adorable!

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FLYER
WORKSHEET:
PLANNING
1. I made 2 individual cakes for each young woman, using these mini springform pans. I made it simple and used Betty Crocker's Yellow Cake Mix. The girls loved that they could make their own mini cake and take it home with them.
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2. Next, I whipped up a batch of buttercream frosting.  Make plenty!  Here's a good recipe:  buttercream frosting

3. Set up banquet tables, cover with plastic table cloths (makes for an easy clean-up), and chairs for each young woman and leader.

4. Have the following items for each young woman and leader (or have them bring their own):
  • Pastry bags with plastic couplers (large ziplock bags will also work)
  • Assorted decorating tips
  • Straight and offset icing spatulas
  • Rotating cake stand or lazy Susan (optional)
  • Food coloring for tinting icing
  • Mini Marshmallows and lots of random sweet stuff for decorating

ACTIVITY

Cake Decorating 101
Using a Coupler:
A plastic coupler allows you to use different decorating tips while piping from one bag. To change decorating tips, unscrew the coupler ring, replace the decorating tip, and replace the ring.
Filling a Pastry Bag:
1. "Cuff" the bag top over one hand, or place the bag, tip down, in a tall glass and fold cuff around the rim. Insert icing with a spatula using your other hand, scraping the icing against the side of the bag to release it. Do not fill the bag more than halfway. Unfold the cuff.
2. Gather the top edges together with one hand, and drag the thumb and index finger of your other hand downward to let out air, forcing icing into bag and decorating tip. Twist the top of the bag to close and to maintain pressure.

Frosting the cake:
Creating the Perfect Base: Every icing job begins with a smooth layer of base icing.
1. Place a chilled cake on a platter or cardboard cake round, and transfer it to a rotating cake stand. Smooth on a base layer of slightly chilled buttercream with a straight icing spatula to seal the cake crumbs. Chill the cake until icing has hardened, about 15 minutes.
2. Coat the sides of the cake with 1/4 inch of buttercream. Hold the spatula parallel to the sides of the cake with the blade slightly angled towards you. Apply pressure with the spatula against the sides of the cake, and use your other hand to rotate the cake stand, smoothing the sides.
3. Spread excess icing from the sides onto the top of the cake and add more to coat. Position the spatula almost flat halfway across the top of the cake. Apply pressure as you rotate the cake stand, smoothing the top. Chill until the icing has hardened, about 15 minutes, before decorating.
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Decorating the cakes (unleash their creativity!):
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