Trimming And Cuttting Cakes

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Now it's time to start working with cakes, In this section, I'll show you how to advance naturally from cake trimming and icing to piping methods and fondant principles. 

"Begin with the basic cake recipes, as well as basic frostings and fillings." 


    Trimming and cutting any cake, whether it's made of icing or fondant, is the first step in decorating it. To achieve a level top, remove the top layer of discolored "skin" of burnt cake using a serrated knife. I like to work with a frozen cake since it is easier to cut evenly. Freezing has a negative reputation in the food industry since it is associated with TV dinners and frozen pizzas. However, there are situations when a freezer can come in handy. 

   I don't insist on freezing a newly made and cooled cake in the recipes, but it's one of the nicest things you can do. It keeps all of the moisture in, whereas cakes in the refrigerator tend to dry out. Also, if you plan to ice and or decorate a cake, it will be stiffer when it comes out of the freezer, making trimming, halving, and icing it much easier. For the best trimming texture, freeze the cakes for 1 to 2 hours. You can keep them frozen for a longer time,

   However, they will become quite hard if not allowed to defrost slightly before cutting into them. Trimming a cake that is as hard as a rock is perilous because the knife can slip.

If your cake needs to be sliced in half horizontally, start by placing it on your turntable or work surface. Kneel or bend so the cake is at eye level and you can see it from all sides. 

    As you apply pressure to the top with your free hand, keep your attention fixated on the place where the knife enters the cake. To get a nice, even cut, spin the cake against the knife while maintaining it straight. If you're going to fill a cake, always attempt to make the layers level with each other, trimming if required so they stack straight. 


I like to fill cakes with a pastry bag since it's the best tool for any filling or frosting because it decreases the amount of spreading and scraping required to fill and ice a cake perfectly. Using a spatula to spread a heavy cream filling over a cake could lead it to shatter. Similarly, if you work on a soaked sponge cake with a spatula for too long, it will fall apart. 

Cake Filling

When using a pastry bag to fill a cake, use the basic tip. Place the first cake layer on the turntable. Pipe the filler in concentric circles with steady pressure, stopping to lift the bag after each circle. Use your cake icing spatula to gently smooth out the layer once it has been covered with frosting circles. Place the next layer on top, carefully pressing it down to make sure it's level. 

 Icing (Frosting) Cakes

Before frosting a cake, double-check to make sure the layers appear beautiful and straight and aligned, and make sure the cake is centered on the turntable. A four-layer cake should have the same shape as a plain cake. Trim the layers to balance them out if necessary, or add a little extra icing to straighten uneven layers.

  Apply consistent pressure to the bag while spinning the turntable to pipe concentric circles on the cake, stopping and raising the bag between rounds. Smooth the circles on top of the cake together with the cake icing spatula by holding it parallel to the cake top and spinning the turntable, gradually decreasing the surface of the spatula close to the cake.

    The ridges on the edge of the cake were created with a decorator's comb; (for instructions on using a decorator's comb.) 

Finally, while the turntable is spinning, hold the spatula parallel to the top of the cake and drop it just enough to smooth the top one last time, leveling it out and preparing it for decoration." 


   Italian sponge cakes are meant to be soaked in syrup, as their name implies. You might eat a vanilla, chocolate, or carrot cake plain, but not a sponge cake because it's dense and dry unless it's soaked. 

On soak a sponge cake, generously apply the syrup to the cake using a pastry brush, pausing periodically, to allow the cake to absorb it. You'd be shocked at how much syrup a cake can withstand. 

    When layering a sponge cake, wait until the layers are on the cake before applying the syrup; if you try to lift them after soaking, they will break. 

After a day or two in the refrigerator, the flavor of a sponge cake will deepen. Place on a dish and loosely cover with plastic wrap. 


There are no limits to the types of designs and patterns you may create on a cake, but here are some of our favorites at Our bakery. If you've never used a pastry bag, fondant, or modeling chocolate before, be prepared for some learning and practice and growth, but the majority of people find that they improve quickly. Just be patient, and remember what my father used to say, “There's nothing you can't fix in decorating." 


  I like to use a border on both the top and bottom of decorated cakes." A cake's top borders might make it appear larger or smaller” When the border is piped inside the cake's edge, the cake seems smaller. It makes the cake appear larger if the border is piped outside the edge.

A shell border is my favorite border for the bottom of a cake. A shell border can be built in almost any size and with a variety of regular or interchangeable tips and in just about any size or shape.

   Place the tip at the bottom of the cake to pipe a shell border (at left)." Slowly revolve the turntable by squeezing and pulling. Continue around until you reach the starting spot. 

Other Borders: 

Forward Loop

Reverse Loop

Double Reverse Loop

Loop Loop skip








Make use of a little replaceable tip. Apply consistent pressure while moving your wrist up and down. Only move the wrist/hand; the arm remains stationary.

Other swags borders 

Simple swag

Shell swag

Pluse swag

Ruffle swag

Leaf swag 


You'll need flawlessly smooth buttercream with no air in it for drop lines; it should be fluffy as smooth as shaving cream.

As you turn the table, keep your arm motionless and lean away. 

Then let the line fall... 

Place the other end of the rope on the cake by leaning forward. 


Continue till you reach the starting location. 

Repeat the steps to construct a second drop line, making somewhat shorter drop lines right above the first lines but ending each drop line at the same location. By adding intersecting drop lines, you can create variations.

Filigree Piping

 Is a term used to describe piping that is delicate in 

"Drawing on the cake," Although filigree piping is freestyle, the individual pattern elements should not touch. Some of my favorite filigree patterns can be found below.

Other Design Possibilities:



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