Baking at home is a fun way to spend your time. Not only is the process of baking enjoyable, but you have something you can be proud of at the end. You also have something you can eat and share with friends and family. It can be pretty easy to put together a tasty cake, but what some people struggle with is what their cakes look like. It might taste good but it can be pretty disappointing when it doesn’t look very impressive. And when you’re not a professional baker, you might not even know where to start. Fortunately, there are lots of easy ways to make any cake look good.
Get the Shape Right
One of the first things you might want to do is work out how to get the shape of your cake right. You look at professional cakes that have been frosted and decorated, and they all seem to have perfectly flat tops and crisp edges. Meanwhile, your cake bulges in the middle or slopes on one side. For a better shape, start by smoothing out your batter before baking. After baking, you might want to level off the top of your cake to make it flat. But the alternative, especially if you’re doing layers, is to turn your cake upside down, making the flat bottom a flat top.
Pick Up Some Fondant Skills
A lot of people can’t stand fondant, but it’s one of the best things you can use for decorating a cake. Firstly, homemade fondant tastes a whole lot better than store-bought, so try making your own. There’s a great recipe on how to make homemade fondant here and it’s way easier than you think it is. But if you still don’t like it when you make it yourself (some people think it’s too sweet), you can simply view it as a decorating material. It’s ok to leave it on the plate or pass it off to someone who actually likes it.
Practice Piping Buttercream
If you’d rather avoid fondant, you can still do plenty with other types of frosting. Buttercream or other soft icings, such as cream cheese frosting or glace icing, can be great for decorating in different ways. If it’s the right consistency to pipe or spread, it gives you many different ways to use it for decoration. You can go for a simple covering of buttercream, smoothed neatly all over your cake, or maybe a slightly more rustic look. Or you can pipe all kinds of swirls, flowers, and other details.
Don’t Be Afraid to Use Store-Bought Decorations
Being able to make your own cake decorations is great, but don’t feel that you have to. There are plenty of things you can buy that will immediately help you to uplift any cake you make. Whether you use nuts, sprinkles, edible flowers, or any decorations you can pick up in the baking aisle of your nearest supermarket, it’s easy to just place something in the right way and make your cake look amazing.
You don’t have to be a pro baker to make your cakes look elegant. A few simple tips can help you make some big changes.