Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Adventures in Piping

Remember those vanilla cookies I made the other day? Yeah, they were tasty and all, but a little lame on their own. Remember those orange cupcakes with buttercream frosting? Yeah, I really needed a batch and a half of frosting, not two batches.

Hmm, lame cookies and leftover frosting...sounds like a perfect combination to me!

I figured this would be a good chance to (finally!) teach myself some piping. Piping flowers is not for sissies! It took me lots of practice, but I finally got something decent!

First, the frosting. It was about a week old at this point, so it had a funny texture. A minute back in the stand mixer fixed that right up! I got a set of Wilton piping tips with a #104 petal tip, and a #352 leaf tip. (and a drop flower tip that I couldn't figure out.) They took a hunk of time and a lot of googling to figure out, but here's what I came up with:

The petal tip has a fat end and a skinny end. With the fat end where you want the middle of the flower, (counter-intuitive, I know,) make a little "loop" motion while piping. It took about a hundred times to get just the right technique down, but once you do, make five or six petals together (I liked the look of five, but sometimes six fit better.)

The leaf on the other hand, was way easy. The tip has two pokey parts on it. With the pokey parts stacked on top of each other, pipe a leaf! The slower you move, the fatter and wrinklier the leaf will be. Stop squeezing but keep moving to get the little taper on the end.

Finish off with a dot of yellow for the center! They're not perfect, but not bad for my first try!

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