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Thursday, August 9, 2012

R2D2 Cake decorating steps & tips

A reader emailed me the other day and asked for more pictures and instructions on how I decorated the R2D2 cake for my son’s birthday (posts here and here).  So I went back and dug up some more pictures and decided to post more detailed instructions and tips here for everyone to see.

I used this “vintage” Wilton R2D2 cake pan that my mother in law used for my husband’s birthday cakes when he was a kid, around 1980. 

R2D2 cake pan

1.  Be sure to thoroughly grease and flour your cake pan and remove the cake from the pan about 10 minutes after removing from the oven.  This particular Wilton cake pan has lots of little indentions for R2D2’s different features.  If you’re not careful, some of them may end up staying in the pan.  Not that I know from personal experience or anything.

2.  Make your cake a couple of days ahead of time.  Once fully cooled on a wire rack, wrap the cake in paper towels and then plastic wrap and place back into the cake pan (after you’ve washed it) and either refrigerate or freeze it until you’re ready to use it.

4.  Make your icing and mix your colors maybe the day before you decorate. 

**Spreading out these steps helps me to better manage my time so that I don’t spend as much time all in one day.

5.  You will need four colors of blue using a light blue, such as Wilton Sky Blue, for your base color. 

R2D2 cake colors numbered
Start by mixing your regular butter cream or cream cheese icing.  I think it only requires 1 recipe worth.  I would say take about half of it and mix your #4 or lightest blue color.  Put about 1/4 aside.  Then mix more blue to make it darker for your #3 blue color.  Put some of that aside, and mix more blue and possibly 1 teeny tiny drop of black to get your #2 blue color.  Finally pull some of that out to mix in more blue and probably just a little black to get your #1 darkest blue color.

6.  I do not frost the cake before decorating.  A) It would cover up the detail of R2D2’s features which would make it way more difficult to decorate and 2) We tend to not like tons of icing.  Using just the icing for decorating the cake to icing ratio is much better for us.

7.  Pretty much, I would decorate it in order from 1 to 4 and then white using the patterns as pictured on the pan’s insert.  Stars in some areas and the back and forth snake type pattern in other areas. 

R2D2 cake pan insert numbered 2 
First, using a number 4 (or 5 or 6) tip, outline everything. 

R2D2 outlined 
Next, using either the number 17 or 18 decorating tip, begin filling in the areas as numbered above.  I use the smaller #17 tip for smaller areas and the larger #18 tip for larger areas.

R2D2 partially filled 
8.  Finally, after all the blue is done, fill in the white areas and use red M&M’s or Skittles for the lights on R2D2’s “head”. 

R2D2 cake 4

If I have baked the cake a couple of days before and made the icing colors early, then decorating only takes me a couple of hours.

Best of luck to you!!!  Enjoy!


kris valencia said...

Hi Thank you for your great tips about Cake decoating ideas This is excellent suggestion for a beginner in decorating cake.