Cake Decorating: A Woodland Scene

A love for Cake Decorating is something I share with my Dad. He worked in a bakery when he was in college and throughout my childhood he always made exquisite cakes for our birthdays and special occasions. When I was a kid, I loved watching him put everything together  and I was there every step of the way, licking the beaters before we put them in the sink, helping with decisions on frosting color and flower placement, watching his steady hand piping the frosting into perfect borders and embellishments... Dad has skills.

When I got older, I started to learn his trade. Truthfully, I will never be as talented as Dad. But I love the look of delight on a person's face when I present them with a fun cake crafted especially for them, so I keep making them.

In that spirit, I am so excited to introduce a new feature on the blog! Every month, I will be posting a seasonally decorated cake and telling you how to make it. And they will be easy. I promise.  

For this month's cake, A Woodland Scene, you will need:

Cake Mix, Chocolate Frosting, Powdered Sugar, Stencils (we used Martha Stewart Holiday Icons), Paper for Taping around the Stencils. 

Here are the steps:

1) Bake a Devil's Food cake in two 9" Round Cake pans.

2) Slice across the top of the bottom layer to make it flat.

3) Frost the top of the first layer. This is your practice section! 

So, using powdered sugar and stencils to decorate a cake requires a practice round. If you use too much sugar, lifting the stencil will disturb the top layer of sugar and your shape will be ruined. With powdered sugar, LESS IS MORE! Also, we ended up taping some paper around the stencils to catch the excess sprinkled sugar before it landed on the cake. Use this first layer to practice placement of the design and application of the sugar. 

4) Once you've gotten to know your stencils and found your sweet spot with the sugar, it's time to put the second layer on top and frost the whole cake. Try to make the top of the cake frost as smoothly as possible. 

5) This is the decision round. Place your stencils and apply your sugar until the whole top is decorated. It will either be horrible or a great success. If you practiced on the first layer, chances of victory are good.

6) Clean it up. Did you make a mistake? Use a toothpick to clean up the excess sugar and perfect your designs. 

7) Serve your fabulous cake! Enjoy. 

If you make a Woodland Cake, or try this technique, I would LOVE to see photos. 

Happy Baking!

xo Katie