Through our partnership with America’s Test Kitchen, Holland America Line guests are able to attend live onboard cooking shows and hands-on workshops. In the state-of-the-art onboard culinary facility guests learn foolproof techniques and user-friendly recipes for making delectable dishes with confidence.
One of the hands-on workshops offered is Cake Decorating, and our America’s Test Kitchen host shared these helpful tips so you can make beautifully decorated cakes at home.
1. Don’t refrigerate the frosting. If it’s chocolate frosting, it will dull the chocolate, and if it’s butter cream, it will make the frosting too hard to pipe out of your pastry bag.
2. Don’t overfill your pastry bag. It makes it difficult to work with.
3. When using a pastry bag to apply frosting, use just one hand to put pressure on the top. Squeezing with two hands can cause air pockets to develop or the frosting will come out of the top instead of the tip.
4. Especially for chocolate frosting, use corn syrup instead of sugar and butter. Corn syrup gives the frosting a nice glossy sheen and makes it more spreadable.
A word on corn syrup: Corn syrup gets a bad rap because people are afraid of hydrogenated fats and high-fructose corn syrup, which are bad for you. But the kind of corn syrup used in baking is the same stuff your mother and grandmother had in their pantry. It’s used in all kinds of baking as a sweetener and for its other properties, and it is no worse for your health than sugar.