I've always admired those perfectly smooth cakes you see through the windows of your local bakery. They're just so beautiful in their simplicity. And though I've admittedly tried my hand at them a time or two, I've never quite mastered the look. But with Mayflour Cake + Confections step by step guide, I'm now more confident than ever that we call all frost the perfect cake. Captured by White Loft Studio, cake lovers can reunite right here
From Jocelyn of Mayflour Cake + Confections... A lovely cake is achievable at home, even if you aren't comfortable using a piping bag. I'm of the belief that simple is beautiful, and just a few sprigs of fresh herbs is all you need to dress a cake for any celebration.
HOW-TO FROST THE PERFECT CAKE: THE BASICS
Start with two layers of well chilled cake.
TORTING: On a cake decorating stand or a smooth counter, using a large serrated knife, cut each layer of cake horizontally across the middle. Start slowly, just cutting the edge, and as you add pressure, gently turn the cake, working your way around the entire edge, before cutting through the middle.
FILLING: Add a small amount of frosting on top of each layer, spreading evenly with a spatula, and stacking the layers as you go. It's fine if frosting falls over the edges, you will use this for your crumb coat. Once all the layers are stacked, spread the thinest layer of frosting across the top- this will keep the top layer from drying out.
CRUMB COAT: A crumb coat is meant to smooth out imperfections, keep crumbs from breaking loose in your frosting, and keep the cake from drying. Apply frosting around the side of the cake, filling in any cracks, and scrap of all excess so you have a thin, even layer. Return the cake to the refrigerator to chill for an hour.
FINAL COAT: Don't be afraid to use a lot of frosting, you will end up taking some away as you smooth the cake. Start by spreading a generous amount of frosting across the top of the cake and smooth with a spatula. Using the frosting that has fallen over the edge, and adding more, cover the side of the cake completely. Smooth slightly with a spatula, but don't worry about it being perfect. Using a bowl or bench scraper, set the bottom edge of the scraper against your cake stand or counter, and with the other hand, turn the cake in one smooth movement. Try to make a complete turn without adjusting your hand, this will insure you don't have any marks from the bench scraper starting or stopping. Lastly, with a spatula, very gently smooth the edge of the cake by pulling any bumps of frosting across the top to blend. Return the finished cake to the refrigerator to allow the frosting to set. Cake is best enjoyed at room temperature, and I always allow an hour or two before serving.
FOR THE PERFECT CAKE
1. Use fresh herbs: For this cake we used fresh rosemary from the garden, but it would also work beautifully with fresh thyme, or dried Lavender.
2. The addition of herbs can work with any cake recipe of your choice, I like the one from Cooks Illustrated, and use it often. Whatever recipe you choose, measure out 1/3 of the called for sugar, and pulse in a food processor with 2 tablespoons of Rosemary sprigs (removed from stems). Add to the remaining sugar and continue with the recipe as directed.
3. Prior to serving, snip sprigs of herbs for decorating, avoiding any with a thick stem. Gently twist sprigs together as you work your way around the base of the cake, creating a simple and elegant ring around your dessert.