Inspiration - Decorating with Rich' n Smooth
I don't know about anyone else at the moment, but I am fascinated with the art of Clay Art cakes, an art form found in streets and shops in places like Malaysia, Thailand and the like. I so admire the skill and speed these people have. It just leaves me in awe.
We have a few new products in the shop so I thought I would take the opportunity to take home these products for a play. I wanted to use as few cake tools as I could.
Out of pure laziness, I took two disposable bags. In my opinion disposable bags are one of the best inventions of mankind! If I never have to wash another piping bag full of pastry cream, or any other substance, I will die a happy woman!
A new piping kit had arrived, so I grabbed that too. I'm sure you can achieve everything possible with 12 nozzles and a coupler. Couplers are another great invention. Swapping tips without swapping bags - way too easy!
Rich 'n Smooth, my next best favourite thing. I worked with Rich's products (we're on first name basis now) about 15 years ago. It has been readily available overseas and the company I was working for at the time used to import it just for their own use. So I was very excited when the Rich's rep walked through the door. Order! Order! Order! I said. It tastes great, it's easy to use, is great value as it goes a long way and has a great shelf life. Not only that, it's ambient stable once whipped!
Once home and all my homely duties were fulfilled (everyone bar me in bed) it was time for a play.
Rich 'n Smooth is so simple you just pour it into your mixer, 7 minutes on high and lovely whipped frosting ready to go!
Next I searched and searched for a flower nail. Do you think I could find one? I logged into the memory banks and remembered something I had seen a while ago and thought it was a great idea - marshmallows on sticks! I was lucky enough to have two sizes on hand, and after all this was all about experimenting and stepping out of the square.
First I torte and filled my sponge. I just whizzed up some strawberries with sugar for a filling. Lining the edges with a dam of Rich's before I filled it. I filled, stacked and gave a quick crumb coat. I put my cake in the freezer whilst I played just to set up a bit. I knew it was going to get poked, prodded and have frosting applied, removed and reapplied so thought this might give it its best chance.
Then it was playtime. Grabbed some marshmallows, cut the large ones in 3 and stuck them on dowels. Practised some roses, pansies, orchids and fantasy flowers and basically just relaxed, didn't put too much technical thought into it and just had a play. I can't actually remember the last time I did that!
I kept building things up, wiping it off, I decided I needed to add a little colour. Just used some gels in the Rich's and it coloured easily. I did find once I worked the colour into the Rich's it was a little silkier to work with. I think it knocked some of the air out. This made it silkier to pipe. So next time I will do that before I begin.
It was getting late so I thought I better call it a night. I put all my flowers on the cake, including the marshmallow flower nails, some leaves here and there. A super-fast frill and called it a night.
So you will have to forgive may piping, I do realise it is not magnificent and by all means nowhere near the style and perfection that I have seen in the online clay art videos. But you can achieve a similar cake easily with limited time, limited ingredients. No mess and no fuss. I have had fun playing, and my family will definitely enjoy eating it as would yours. So my advice to you would be to give it a go. You may find your inner artist.
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