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Posted: 02 October 2009 01:24 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 61 ]
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Sometimes I skip the fridge part and leave it on my countertop overnight, straight from the freezer. That way it’s ready to work with first thing in the morning and I don’t have to wait till it reaches room temp.

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Posted: 02 October 2009 02:03 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 62 ]
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I do that, too, Rozanne, with smaller cakes. But I get nervous about maxing out on the hours at room temp when doing a wedding cake. Amazing how fast it can add up over a two- or three-day production schedule plus the time the cake will sit out at the wedding venue.

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Posted: 02 October 2009 05:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 63 ]
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Carol, thank you…you have been so helpful.  Actually, I made all the MBC and Chocolate Ganache within the last month, so half my freezer is full of containers. I tried to split the normal MBC recipe of I think 4.5 cups into 3 containers so they wouldn’t take long to defrost. I’m doing 3 tiers, 6, 9, and 12, with 3 layers of cake per tier…Vanilla butter cake, Chocolate Devils Food, Vanilla Butter cake. I’ve baked and frozen all but the 9 inch Devil’s Food and 2 of the 6 inch layers. I think I’m just nervous about when to start the thaw.

The wedding is 12 noon Saturday. Definitely the cake must be complete on Friday.  The plan is to fill each layer with a mixture of MBC and Chocolate Ganache, crumb coat with Vanilla MBC, and cover with Fondant. With so much that has to be defrosted before the work starts, do you think I can put all the MBC and Ganache in the Refrigerator on Monday to start thawing, and leave them out at room temperature Thursday? Then I can move all the frozen wrapped cakes to the Refrigerator Thursday morning early so I can fill and crumb coat later Thursday. Then Should I put the completed crumbcoated tiers into the fridge until I do the Fondant? I guess I’m not sure when I can fill and crumb coat the cakes during the thawing process. Could the cakes be left out of the fridge to defrost Thursday morning?

You’re an absolute sweety…I know my head is not quite together with this. The baking is one thing. All is well with that. I’m organized with the different elements…just not with the…..Now what do I do that I have all the pieces.

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Posted: 02 October 2009 07:40 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 64 ]
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Claudia, I am so sorry to hear about your father.  My deepest condolences to you and your family.

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Posted: 02 October 2009 07:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 65 ]
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Thank you so much Jeanne. This Forum has been very uplifting to me at this time.  Very hard to be in baking mode for a first wedding cake with so much on my mind. Claudia

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Posted: 02 October 2009 08:01 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 66 ]
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Ok, to answer your question about timing.

I would take the cake layers out the day before and leave them in the fridge.
Same for the frostings; maybe even put them in the fridge before you go to bed, and then take them out of the fridge first thing in the morning to use later in the day.

Give yourself an extra day just in case you need it; it won’t hurt anything (the cakes will still be fresh and wonderful and you will feel thrilled about being ahead of your schedule) and it gives you extra time you might need if something doesn’t go as you expect.  If you are putting the fondant on the cakes on Friday, you need to have them fully assembled and crumb coated on Thursday.  Pull them out of the freezer on Monday evening or Tuesday morning; assemble them on Wednesday, crumb coat on Thursday.

If it’s good therapy for you to bake, you could always make extra now; if you don’t use it for the wedding you’re sure to have neighbors or friends who would love cake for the holidays .....

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Posted: 03 October 2009 11:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 67 ]
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Thanks Jeanne. That’s pretty much what I was thinking.  I’m just concerned about the freshness of the MBC since Rose says it keeps I believe 2 days out.  I was thinking of filling, assembling and crumb coating on Thursday. Do I need to wrap the cakes with plastic after that and I should put them back in the fridge until the Fondant, yes?

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Posted: 03 October 2009 09:43 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 68 ]
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Yes!

After you assemble the cakes, cover or wrap them with plastic and put them back in the fridge until you are ready to crumb coat.  After you crumb coat, put them back in the fridge.  It is much easier to work with a cold cake when you are applying fondant - a room temp cake could shift, the filling can bulge - it’s just much safer to work with a cold cake!  Remember to have your buttercream as smooth as possible so you won’t trap air under the fondant, but if you do develop a bubble, just use a (clean) pin.  Poke a hole very gently at the bottom of the bubble and smooth downwards with your fingertip (if you use a downward stroke, you won’t widen the hole left by the pin, and if you insert the pin at the bottom, any hole is less noticeable).

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Posted: 04 October 2009 10:21 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 69 ]
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Jeanne…thank you. I think I knew all these answers…I’m just second guessing myself. The thing i really wasn’t sure of was, when the cakes are filled, assembled AND crumb coated, did I need to wrap them again in the fridge.  Should I let the cakes rest overnight Thursday in the fridge, and then take them out Friday AM to do the fondant?  I know once the Fondant is done they remain out.  How long should I wait to dowel and stack?

Jeanne, I also looked at your beautiful website. Can you tell me how you did the detail on the cake with the Lilacs? It looks quilted with dots . Thanks. Just wondering if I should attempt this.

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Posted: 04 October 2009 04:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 70 ]
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Hi…. I don’t think you need to cover the crumb coated cakes, but think about what else you have in the fridge at the time. 

If you are going to quilt the sides of the cake, you need to mark the lines within an hour of applying the fondant (depending on the brand of fondant you are using.  Please say you are not using Wilton fondant!  Or if you are making your own.  Some of the commercial brands will begin to “crust” quickly (e.g., Satin Ice) so you need to quilt as soon as you finish applying the tier.  You first decide how wide you want the diamonds to be and then mark the sides of the cake at 1” or 2” intervals.  Then using a flexible angled ruler and your tracing wheel, mark the lines; first in one direction all around the cake and then in the other direction.  Colette Peters explains it way better in her books!!

You don’t need to wait to dowel and stack, but if you do the quilted design, put the fondant on, then the quilting for each of the tiers, then dowel and stack them.  I used the edible pearls from Pfeil and Holing for the intersection of each line.

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Posted: 04 October 2009 05:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 71 ]
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Jeanne…Thanks for your advice. I think this time around I will not do the quilting.  It’s more important to me and my daughter to have a good tasting neat cake that is pretty. I think this can be achieved simply.  I actually made batches of Marshmallow fondant and practiced some months ago with it. I’ve heard of the Wilton Fondant and how bad it is. The MMF does not taste bad at all and is fairly cooperative to roll. My daughter is fairly open to either the buttercream or the fondant, so I’m going to play it by ear and see how good my frosting artistry is, and decide whether I want to proceed with fondant. 

How did you apply the edible pearls on fondant? With dabs of buttercream? Do you think they would look good as a border around ribbon at the bottom of each tier, or should I just pipe MBC?

Anyway…you are an inspiration. Your cakes are beautiful and your feedback by clients says it all. Thank you again. Claudia

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Posted: 05 October 2009 06:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 72 ]
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The pearls are a little small to use as a border (they are now making larger ones, but they are hard and I wouldn’t use many of them); it would be more delicious to pipe a bead border.

If you use a ribbon at the base, you could pipe same color royal icing beads on the top of the ribbon the way Elisa Strauss does at Confetti Cakes; it’s a nice, clean look.  There are two brands of commercial fondant that I like:  Pettinice and Albert Uster’s Massa Grischuna.  You would use about half a bucket of the Massa for a 12/9/6 - their web site is http://www.auiswiss.com

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Posted: 08 October 2009 07:07 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 73 ]
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Jeanne,

How do these compare to Satin Ice? Is that a good one?

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Posted: 08 October 2009 11:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 74 ]
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I like Satin Ice colored fondants - they are very bright and are perfect for coloring larger amounts of plain fondant for when you want a color without having to use a lot of pink or red gel or paste color, for example.  I’ve found that my customers are not so enthusiastic about the flavor, though; I get a much better response when I use Pettinice or Albert Uster’s Massa Grischuna, these are more neutral and “plain” tasting (it’s still sweet, but no aftertaste).  Satin Ice seems to crust faster than any other brand I’ve used but I know some people swear by it.

Would I use it? No, but this is personal preference.  Would I use it if I had to?  No to that too; to the point where if I had said yes to the Food Network Challenge people, I would have shipped the Albert Uster fondant out there on my own dime (contestants pay to ship everything there). But remember, I’m doing this as a business so I need to make people happy with what tastes good to them, and there are a lot of people who like the taste of Satin Ice.  They just don’t live around here smile

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Posted: 09 October 2009 11:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 75 ]
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Jeanne…you put a smile on my face!  I’ve been going back and forth with the whole Fondant thing and wonder if I want it at all!  I think my daughter has the notion of the perfect clean white wedding cake. That said, I want a cake that looks good, and tastes good.  I thought it would look better and be easier (I’ve practiced with the MMF) to cover with Fondant as opposed to the hard task of making the MBC look smooth. I know the buttercream alone would taste better, but this is the age of Fondant and Sugar flowers.  I spoke to one of the bakers/decorators at Carlo’s Bakery this morning (Cake Boss fame). Just wanted another opinion on amounts and feedback about the Satin Ice which is what they use now (can we say pay-off!).  He was pretty upfront and said he didn’t like the taste but people do.

Anyway, I know my cakes will taste good, I’m more concerned about the decorations…especially on buttercream.  If I have a topper of flowers, won’t it take away all the buttercream?  Also, I’m using dark green grosgrain ribbon.  Will the color be an issue on buttercream?

Thanks for all your support, again. Claudia

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