Cake Decorating Class
Past the big glass entrance of the loft building on Brannan near the Flower Market, I went up four floors and walked down corridors decorated with abstract paintings before hearing voices. The door was ajar and I got into a professional kitchen with a man surrounded by eight women in apron. Time to get serious.
The teacher, Richard Festen, showed us what we were going to make and take home: a clown cake he created specially for us. None of us really believed we’d make something remotely as nice as his but we all nodded. Plexyglass rolling pin, pairing kife, paintbrush and toothpick. We had everything we needed to get started before birthday season.
Richard explained to us that there are basically three shapes when using fondant to decorate a cake: round balls, pear shapes and logs. What looked simple in the beginning started shaping up with us making noses and smiles, adding arms to the side and making shoes of different colors. Then came a most important moment: covering the cake with a 1/4 inch of white fondant. I’ve always wondered how pastry chefs get no pleats when covering their cakes. You just press lightly on the sides of the cake and it evens out. It’s magic! .
That being completed, all that needed to be done was making round white balls to decorate the sides of the cake (with an extra colored ball to give some spritz to the decoration) and Voila!