Books

Book Review | Step-by-Step Cake Decorating

Step-by-Step Cake Decorating*I received a copy of this book for review, but was not compensated financially in any way. The opinions expressed are my own and are based solely on my experiences while reading this book.*

Title: Step-by-Step Cake Decorating

Author: Karen Sullivan

About the Book:

From delicate creations for weddings to fantastical birthday cupcakes, Step-by-Step Cake Decorating contains 20 remarkable projects for every occasion. There are more than 100 pages of step-by-step icing, piping, stenciling, painting, and cutting techniques. Each cake recipe includes fun, unique tips and variations for turning it into cupcakes and cake pops. Home bakers looking to impress their friends and family with gorgeous confections will love these smart, elegant projects.

My Review:

Though I love to bake cakes, decorating them is entirely another story. The most I do is frost the cake and maybe add a few toppings. I’ve always been envious of people who could make cakes and cupcakes and have them look too pretty to eat. My cakes never turn out too pretty to eat, but they do taste good. I recently picked up a copy of Karen Sullivan’s Step-by-Step Cake Decorating and figured 2014 will be the year I learn how to properly decorate a cake!

Step-by-Step Cake Decorating is perfect for a beginner like me. There’s a whole chapter dedicated to all the tools and equipment you’ll need if you want to get serious about cake decorating. I’ve seen many of these tools at our local Michael’s, but never knew what they were for exactly. Now I know! I love how it’s laid out so you can see what the tool looks like and what it’s used for. I was blown away at how many piping tips there are! I have three of them and I thought I was doing well. I guess there’s a lot more I’ll need!

The section on Key Ingredients discusses buttercream frosting, marzipan, fondant, chocolate and much more. It also has diagrams to show how to properly frost a cake and I learned I’ve been doing it totally wrong. I also liked the part on how to melt and temper chocolate in the microwave. I was introduced to chocolate clay something I’d never heard of before. It’s used to create sculptures, ribbons, figures, etc. 

In Decorating Techniques, I learned how to make templates for 3-D creations, build with fondants, build a tiered cake, and lots more. Some of the techniques are a little advanced. However, after I’ve mastered the basics I can give some of them a try. Stencil embossing looks fancy!

In the last part of the book is all the projects! There’s step by step instructions on how to create a Train cake, Princess castle, Cupcake bouquet and my personal favourite, a Handbag cake. Now these creations look too nice to eat! There’s even a few cake recipes at the end of the book too.

If you’ve ever wanted to learn about cake decorating, this is the book to get! I think it will be an interesting experience and I’m looking forward to attempting a project or two  with my two girls. Both my girls are artistic and love to bake so I think this will be a fun thing for us to do together.

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Stacie Vaughan

Stacie is the mom of two girls and lives in Ontario, Canada. She enjoys cooking/baking, photography, reading, DIY and is fueled by lots of coffee!

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