Celebrate the everyday – have this pretty [ruffle] cake for any occasion!
October always has seemed like a month with its own theme. When you think about Halloween and Thanksgiving you have these family oriented events that are already sort of traditionally styled in certain ways, and I feel like while we had a blast making fall crafts, it’s nice to use November as a breather before the next party season. So while some people might be laying low after all that October hosting, we’re brushing up on some of the basics for everyday entertaining.
One of my favourite cake ideas is the vertical ruffle cake. I love girly cakes, and there’s something so sweet and soft about this design I’ve been totally obsessing over so it was about time we tackled it in the Party Girl test kitchen. Here’s how you can master this quick and pretty cake decorating technique, perfect for everyday celebrations!
Your first step is to crumb coat your cake. I’m currently obsessed with this pale pink (it’s a Wilton dye, called Rose Petal Pink if you were curious) so pretty much all of my cakes look like this one right now, for all occasions, because I’m great like that. But you can do this technique with any cake and it would still look adorable. If you haven’t crumb coated a cake before, here are some tips:
1) Stick the cake in the fridge for like 15 minutes before you crumb coat it. While the idea of the crumb coat is that it doesn’t have to be neat, it’s still a lot easier if your cake isn’t falling all over the place, and the fridge should help with that.
2) Make sure your icing is fresh. If it’s been sitting on the counter for a few hours give it a swirl with your mixer. Warm, fresh icing (warm as in not stiff, don’t heat it up or anything…) will go on a lot smoother.
3) It won’t be perfect, don’t stress about that. When you cover the whole cake pop it back in the fridge for another 10-15 minutes so your first coat sets.
To make wide ruffles, I used this Wilton 125 tip. If you want tighter ruffles, you can try the Witlon 104. It’s like a smaller version of this. The most important part is this teardrop shape, not so much the size. When you start your first ruffle, make sure you hold the fat end of the tip closest to the cake, similar to how we made the other ruffle cake a little while ago.
Keeping the wide end of the tip tight to the side of the cake, pipe your icing out as though you are stacking each layer on top of each other in a vertical motion. If you want to be neat you can use a fondant smoother (or unused paint scraper if you’re old school like I used to be in the good old days) to draw yourself some guidelines on the side of the cake to keep your edges in line. I just freehanded it and it still turned out super cute (if I do say so myself!).
At the top of the column you can just gently drag the top layer so it overlaps the top of the cake. Afterwards you can choose to pipe something on the top, bring your ruffles in to the centre, or leave it blank like I did. Start your next column directly beside the first. If you want more uniform layers, I’d suggest counting how many times you go back and forth during one column. That way you can make sure you have the same number of ruffles. I definitely didn’t bother with that (are you surprised) but I didn’t really notice it looking particularly messy or anything.
And that’s it! What do you think? Pretty easy, and perfect for a girly brunch, bridal shower, or even baby shower in neutral colours. Let us know what you think in the comments below!