Decorating cakes is an art and an enjoyable pastime. But if you're trying to do it with supplies from your local grocery store, you're not going to have very good results. For professional-looking cakes, you need professional supplies. Here are seven items you need to bake and decorate cakes like the pros.
1. Straight-Edge Pans
Many lower-end baking pans, like those found in grocery stores, have slanted sides. This makes for a cake that is tough to frost evenly. Look instead for cake pans that have straight sides at perfect right angles to the bottom of the pan. This makes for a flat-edged cake that is easier to frost smoothly.
2. A Bench Scraper
A bench scraper, when used by a cake decorator, is not really for scraping benches. Instead, it is for flattening the icing on the sides of the cake. Look for one that has at least a four-inch-long blade so that you can frost four-inch tall cakes.
3. A Piping Bag
In fact, you're going to want several piping bags. A large, 21-inch bag is good for holding your base icing. You also want a couple of smaller, 16-inch bags to hold your colored decorator's icings. You can buy disposable plastic bags, but they tend to be harder to use than the cloth, reusable bags.
4. A Set of Icing Tips
You will need a large flat, icing tip to apply the frosting to the sides of your cakes. Then, you will want an assortment of decorating tips to create attractive decorations on the cake. Most people can make do with just a #22 star tip, a #104 rose tip, and a #10 and #4 round tip at first. As you become more skilled at decorating, you can add to your collection.
5. A Flat Spatula
A long, flat spatula for frosting is another must-have. Some people really like the long, 12-inch ones, and others prefer the shorter, 8-inch spatulas. Hold a few in the store to help figure out which you prefer. You may want a big one and a small one for various jobs.
6. A Rose Nail
If you plan to make any sort of flowers for your cakes, make sure you buy a rose nail. This is a little pedestal that you make flowers on before transferring them to the cake.
7. A Small, Angled Spatula
A tiny, angled spatula is the final necessity for cake decorating. You use it to lift roses off the rose nail and to make final, tiny adjustments to your cake frosting.
For more information, contact your local bakery supplies store.