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I will never forget the first wedding cake I delivered. It was also, the greatest lesson about cake deliveries. My husband usually delivered the cakes with me, but had to work that day. Raul, one of his friends, volunteered to drive me to the reception hall. When Raul arrived to pick me up, he gasped at surprise for the size of the cake. I tried to place the cake in the car but, as Raul’s car was a Sport Spitfire Triumph 1976, a very small two seats car; it was going to be very difficult to find a place for the cake!

It was a three tier wedding cake without separators, covered with poured fondant frosting. Poured fondant was very delicate and to prevent it from cracking, I’d placed the cake, decorated with sugar lace and embro...

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Supplies needed:

  • unflavored gelatin

  • water

  • airbrush color

  • measuring spoons

  • small spatula

  • 2 hole punchers :1- 1/16 round hole and 1- regular size individual hole punch

  • toothpick

  • acetate sheet (or something that won't melt or bow from the heat of the gelatin)

  • microwave safe container

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    The gelatin to water ratio is 2 parts water to 1 part gelatin.

    Put the water in the cup first and then add the gelatin. If you don't you will end up with dry bits of gelatin at the bottom of the cup. Let the gelatin bloom.

    After it blooms, put it in the microwave for approximately 30 seconds. Depending on the wattage of your microwave. Be sure to watch it, especially if you are using a small cup. If it overflows, clean it with hot water!!

    After it comes from the microwave it will have foam on the top of the gelatin.

    You are going to let it sit until the foam is thick enough for you to skim it off of the top. Here is where the toothpick comes in (if you don't want to use a toothpick use a disposable spoon). You are going to take your toothpick and pull off the foam from the top and throw it in the trash. Once you do that your gelatin will be clarified.

    Use airbrush color because of it is liquid characteristics. It blends better into the gelatin. Paste color can be used but it takes a lot more effort to get the color incorporated. Use less color for more transparency and more if you want it more opaque.

    Stir in your color with a toothpick. After adding the color, put your gelatin back in the microwave for no more than 30 seconds.

    Pour it out on your acetate sheet (or clear plastic sheet) and use your spatula to spread it out. Don't spend too much time spreading it out because it sets up in less than 2 min.

    You don't want it too thin (it will be too flimsy to punch out) and you don't want it too thick (it will crack when you punch it out). IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE PERFECTLY EVEN!!! You will notice that it will become ripply but that is ok.

    Set it aside and it usually takes about 5-6 hrs to dry but that depends on your humidity. As it dries it pulls away from the acetate. I let mine sit over night. When it is dry it will pull away from the sheet.

    Here is the secret to it all...the hole punchers!!!!

    The hole punchers can be found at Michael's or Hobby Lobby. The ones that I used are the regular hole punch and 1/16 circular punch.

    Take your small hole puncher and punch a series of holes in a line leaving a space between each small hole so that when you go back to use your "regular" sized puncher you won't overlap wasting your punches.

    Once you have done your small punches go back and center the small hole against your "regular" sized single hole puncher....

    Now comes the best part, open up the holder and release the sequins.

    For these, I added silver airbrush color and silver luster dust. The effect was perfect.

The oriental rhapsody floral sculpture f

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In this tutorial you will learn how to create a simple and elegant monogram cake using Icing Images edible paper to create unique detailed patterns suspended inside a beautiful isomalt cake topper.

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Tools needed for this project:

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Use thick lace with good detail usually called a lace applique. Apply Seal-Dit generously to both sides of the lace. temp-post-image

Sandwich Seal-Dit covered lace between two double sheets of paper towels. Place covered lace into warm oven set at 200 degrees F. (93 Celsius) for about 5 to 10 minutes. temp-post-image

Remove lace from oven and move and press lace between paper towels until no imprint is left by the melted Seal-Dit.

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Sheet Safe-D- Clay to the thick- ness you want your lace mold to be. Apply very thin coat of Seal-Dit. Lay sealed lace pat-tern onto sheeted Safe-D-Clay and press downward to get full contact between lace and clay surface.

temp-post-imageUsing a needle tool held straight upward, make passes around the edge of the lace into the clay until the clay has been cut through. Lift and remove excess Safe-D-Clay on outside of lace pattern.
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Mix parts A and B of Silicone Plas- tique until a uniform blue color has been achieved.
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Apply a thin coat of Silicone Plastique to lace making sure that every detail has been captured. Ap- ply more Silicone Plastique to create a mold thickness of about ¼ inch.
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It is absolutely essential that as a business owner, you track your finances and operation costs. Do not avoid the mathematics. Keep them up to date! You cannot determine if your business is successful unless you are fully aware of all the costs and revenues. It is not difficult to calculate your profit margin and your average profit margin percentages, with some basic, straightforward arithmetic.

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What are the costs?

All the expenses spent to run your business are your costs. These include, ingredients, materials, salaries, postage, rent, taxes, salaries, cleaning materials and costs, electricity, trash collection, telephone bills, paper and inks, vehicle expenses, pens and office supplies, and don’t forget to allow a percentage for “wastage&rdqu...

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In America, the macaroon is known more as a chewy mound of shredded coconut which is lightly sweetened and held together by whipped egg whites, but there is another version, the French Macaroon. This is a dainty French cream filled sandwich cookie, which has a smooth outer appearance, is slightly chewy and absolutely chewy.Serving macaroons in place of wedding cake is becoming the latest trend. They can be made in a variety of colors and flavors and look deliciously decadent on a dessert buffet table. Some brides even go so far as to stack them tall, so that they cake the place of a wedding cake.It was a Parisian pastry chef, Pierre Desfontaines from café Laduree, who decided to take two humble, ordinary almond based cookies, fill...

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Braiding the coffee ring dough creates a nice presentation and is simple to do. Here, the technique is demonstrated with green fondant to make it easier to see.

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Equal lengths and weights (usually about 4 to 5 oz. each

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Braid bottom half of pieces and bring all pieces together at bottom. Flip bottom up and away from you so top half is braided.

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Braid bottom half and leave 2 ends (tabs) out.

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Bring both ends together, placing the closed end in the center of the end with tabs.

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Seal

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Flip ring over and when proofed, the seal will not show.

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ISOMALT - How to cook, hold, pour and store Isomalt.

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Isomalt is a substitute sugar made from beet sugar and is edible. It is used in the weight loss and diabetic food industries. Isomalt is unique among replacement sugars because it retains almost all of the physical properties of real sugar with added benefits for sugar artists, cake decorators and pastry chefs. These benefits include:

1. Increased resistance to humidity therefore, less sticky to work with and less prone to clouding.

2. Better resistance to crystallization.

3. To keep Isomalt crystal clear use distilled water. Minerals in tap water can cause a yellowing effect when exposed to high temperatures, so avoid using tap or bottled spring waterr.

4. Add only enough water to make the Isomalt look like damp sand, (the consistency of making a sand castle on the beach) approximately five ounces by weight for every three pounds of Isomalt.

5. Use stainless steel pots and utensils or silicone utensils for stirring. Do not use a wooden spoon, which will also cause the Isomalt to yellow. Wood absorbs the yellowing minerals.

6. Do not cook less than three pounds of Isomalt at a time. Cooking small amounts of Isomalt causes hot spots in your mixture and may result in yellowing.

7. Cook Isomalt on an appropriately sized burner. Electric burner should be slightly smaller than bottom of pot. When cooking with gas ensure that the flame does not creep up the side of the pot but remains on the bottom of the pot only. These precautions prevent overheating of the sides of the cooking pot, which can cause premature cooking and yellowing. Using an induction range is the best way to cook Isomalt because it renders heat only to the bottom of the pot.

8. It is not necessary to wash down the side of the pot when cooking Isomalt. Simply keep a lid on the pot or make a tent of foil, which will create an internal steam preventing crystallization on the pot sides.

9. Test your candy thermometer. Many of them read inaccurately. Test by bringing water to a boil and inserting thermometer which should read 212 degrees F. at sea level.

10. Cook Isomalt to 338 degrees F. Take off heat at 333 degrees and place bottom of pot in water to stop the cooking process. Allow the pot to stay in water only until the hissing stops, approx. 5 seconds.

11. Pour the Isomalt into a Pyrex or stainless steel pitcher in a 275 - 300 degree oven and let rest for 15 minutes. You will have no bubbles and pure, clear liquid sugar to pour all day.

12. Allow unused Isomalt to cool, and store in a microwave safe container with a tight fitting lid or allow to cool in blocks and wrap in multiple layers of plastic wrap. Place a silica gel packet on top of Isomalt before closing container. You can store cooked Isomalt for two years, providing the container is well sealed.

13. Never store cooked or uncooked Isomalt in a refrigerator or freezer. The high humidity will ruin and even dissolve finished sugar pieces.

HOW TO COOK ISOMALT

1. Add distilled water to Isomalt and stir until it is evenly distributed and resembles wet sand.

2. Place a pot of Isomalt on a burner set at high and stir gently ensuring that you do not cause the crystals to stick to the side of the pan. Stir by pulling the crystals from the outside in in order to help the crystalline Isomalt melt and turn into a liquid.

3. When the Isomalt mixture comes to a boil do not stir. Place lid on pot. Check the temperature periodically to make sure the Isomalt does not burn.

4. Fill a sink with 3 inches of cold water.

5. When the temperature reaches 333 degrees F. remove pot from heat and carefully plunge the base of the pot into the cold water to prevent the Isomalt from cooking further. The temperature will rise to approximately 338 degrees F. during this process.

6. Leave the pot in the water just until the hissing sounds stops then return the pot to the burner set in the off position

7. Add gel, powder or liquid food color when Isomalt cools to about 310 degrees. Higher temperatures may change the color and make it less bright and vivid. If using a paste or gel color, drop the color on top of the Isomalt and stir the food coloring slowly with a long handled spatula as it will bubble profusely so keep your face away from the pot and please, wear disposable gloves. Keep stirring color on top of Isomalt until the bubbling stops. It is now safe to stir the food coloring thoroughly to incorporate it throughout the entire Isomalt mixture. Stir until an even color is achieved.

HOW TO KEEP ISOMALT AT A WORKING TEMPERATURE

1. Pour the melted Isomalt into a Pyrex or stainless steel pitcher and place in a 275 - 300 degree oven and let rest for a minimum of 15 minutes. Allowing Isomalt to rest in a hot oven enables the air to rise to the surface of your mixture and will result in a bubble free mixture.

2. Isomalt can be held in an oven up to three hours before it begins to turn yellow.

3. The lower the oven holding temperature, the longer it can be held without discoloration.

4. To prevent discoloration, keep the oven at 250 degrees F. The mixture will be thick. Place the pitcher in a microwave oven and melt the Isomalt in 20-second bursts until it is thin enough to be poured.

5. At this stage, the Isomalt may be held in a semi-melted state under a 250-watt heat lamp.

HOW TO STORE RAW (UNCOOKED) ISOMALT:
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1. Isomalt, in its uncooked form, will absorb moisture from the air and should be kept in a tightly sealed container.

2. Uncooked Isomalt has a shelf life of two years or more if stored correctly.

3. Place a few silica gel packets into the Isomalt storage container, to extend shelf life and to prevent moisture from making the Isomalt sticky.

HOW TO STORE COOKED ISOMALT:

1. Cooked Isomalt that is exposed to humid conditions will absorb moisture from the air and become sticky. The sticky surface will eventually dry out as humidity conditions change, but this sticky layer will re-solidify. Once this occurs the Isomalt will lose its shine, then become cloudy and will eventually re- crystallize – which renders it unusable.

2. The success of storing cooked Isomalt is to protect it from humidity. One of the most effective methods to achieve this is to use Food Safe Silica Gel Packets. Silica gel is a powerful de-humidifying chemical that absorbs moisture out of the air.

3. Placing the correct amount of silica gel packets in an airtight container with your cooked Isomalt is the best way to keep your sugar projects bright and shiny.

HOW TO RE-MELT ISOMALT:

1. The best way to re-melt cooked Isomalt is in a microwave oven.

2. Place the container of Isomalt in the center of oven cavity and microwave for three to five minute intervals on the MEDIUM setting. As the Isomalt melts, use shorter bursts of microwave cooking.

3. Do not melt Isomalt on a high setting.

4. When you see bubbles rising in the Isomalt mixture from two thirds of the way down, to the top, you are close to 300 degrees F. Remove, stir and place in an oven set at 275 – 300 degrees.

INDUCTION RANGES:

1. Induction ranges cook by creating a strong magnetic field that passes through the cooking vessel and directly heats the metal very efficiently. Induction cooking is the very best way to prepare Isomalt because it only heats at the point of contact with the bottom of the pot. This ensures that the sides of your cooking pot do not over heat and you will also be able to cook Isomalt faster since induction is much more efficient than gas or electric burners.

2. Cooking vessels used on induction ranges must be made of a "ferrous" metal like iron and steel. Non-ferrous materials like aluminum, copper and Pyrex are not usable on an induction cooker.

3. If a magnets sticks to the bottom of a pot, it can be used on an induction cooker.

PURE ISOMALT IS BETTER THAN A BLEND:

1. The large manufacturers of Isomalt make their products for the confectionery, baking and weight
loss industries.

2. Many Isomalt products are blended with other polyols in order to create mixtures
 that work better in large mechanized operations.

3. Many retailers of Isomalt buy and distribute these mixtures assuming that they are selling 100% Isomalt products. A blended Isomalt mixture is inclined to yellow prematurely and can also be less resistant to humidity. For sugar artists and pastry chefs, pure Isomalt is by far a superior product to use when making artistic sugar displays, gems and sculpture. Sugar Arts Institute sells pure Isomalt in quantities of 3-pound bags (the minimum recommended melting weight). Buy your pure Isomalt from Sugar Arts Institute. We will even cook and color it for you! Call for more information 717 721 5064.