Have you ever wondered what goes on in a Wilton Cake Decorating class? Even though I am a proud student of the University of Cookie blog, I thought it would be a good idea to participate in some hands-on training.
Since there aren’t many classes that focus on cookie decorating, I decided to take the Wilton Method Course 1: Decorating Basics classes. There is a great local shop called Sugar Art Cake and Candy Supplies that offered the three-session class. The store provides students with a supply list after you sign up and pay for the class. Here is what students need to bring to the first class:
- Wilton Course 1 Decorating Basics kit.
- Six plain, flat, sugar or butter cookies for practice (Most students, including myself, brought sugar cookies from the bakery section of the grocery store.)
- 1 lb can Wilton ready-to-use decorator icing.
- A box or tupperware-like container to take home your practice cookies.
- Apron (Should of brought mine as icing gets everywhere on your clothes.)
- Pen and paper to take notes.
- Scissors to cut the tips of plastic decorating bags.
- Sticky notes (Did not use these in the class.)
- Damp cloth (Some students brought Wet Naps or Wet Ones – great idea!)
- 1 gallon size plastic food storage bag to carry home used tools.
Many students had bought the accompanying Lesson Plan book. The book was not listed on our class supply list but was highly recommended by our instructor. I ended up purchasing the book after the class and am glad that I did. The book contains the recipes, pictures and supply lists of our upcoming projects. Very important!
There were 16 ladies in the class ranging from a 15 year-old to a lady in her early 70′s. We started out by learning about bags, tips and couplers. We set up our decorating bags with the #12 tip and filled it with the Wilton icing. The icing is super stiff in consistency. Stir in some water when the icing is in the can. Otherwise, it will be almost impossible to squeeze the icing out of the bag. We learned that there are three things that make for a successful cake decorations.
- Consistency of the icing
- Position of the bag (angle)
- Pressure on the bag as you are squeezing out the icing
The decorating kit comes with a very cool practice board and practice sheets. The practice sheets sit underneath a plastic cover so that you can practice making stars, rosettes, dots and lines to your heart’s content. When you are done, scrape off the decorations and start over.
We then practiced making stars and dots on our sugar cookies. I didn’t take any pictures of my beautifully decorated cookies (okay, I am lying my cookies looked awful!) I realized that cake decorating is more difficult than I thought. Let’s just say that I need a lot more practice.
Next week, we are bringing a fully iced cake, piping gel, gel coloring and three cups of Wilton recipe buttercream icing to class. The Wilton recipe will be included in my next post. Be prepared… it is basically one cup of vegetable shortening (a.k.a. Cricso) and 2 lbs of powdered sugar. More on that later… but there were some gasps in the classroom when the recipe ingredients were read off.
How do you make your buttercream frosting? Butter or vegetable shortening or a mixture of both?