To talk to you about this subject, I called on the ''best'' teacher. She's a tutorial pro, and it's not for nothing that she opened her own online cake design school! If you don't already know her, I'm talking about Sandra Major, aka Le Sucre Au Four. Would you like more information about her school and the courses she offers? Click here!
So I'll let her pursue...
If you're reading this, you want to learn how to use edible images. You probably want to know how to apply an image on sugar paste, buttercream or even know the difference between the different edible papers available on the store www.mamangato.com of Maman Gato et Cie.
Let me guess, you don't quite find yourself in this?
You are in the right place to learn. Let me help you. I have prepared a little cheat sheet/tutorial for you so that you can become a rock star of food images.
Differences between edible sheets
Edible images are not rocket science, once you know their usefulness, it's easy to understand how to use them.
· Sugar Sheets (Click here to purchase): The ideal sheet for applying to buttercream cakes or sugar paste. It is a fairly thick sheet on which we print images that stand out very well. I have prepared a little tutorial for you below, I explain to you step by step how to use them on sugar paste (fondant).
· Wafer paper (Click here to purchase): Very thin edible sheets on which you can print with food coloring. This type of sheet reacts strongly when in contact with water so it is to be avoided for images on buttercream cake (which contains a lot of humidity) or even on sugar paste. It is used a lot to make decorations like flowers for example. It imitates leaves, flower petals, butterfly wings very well for more realistic results.
· Sugar Stamps (transfer sheets) (Click here to purchase) : Feuilles sur lesquelles on imprime des motifs ou des images pour ensuite les transférer sur une meringue ou chocolat par exemple. Hyper amusant à utiliser. Beaucoup de possibilités.
· Flexfrost (Click here to purchase) : Flexible edible sheets that make it easy to turn edible sheet into fabric. No more creaking sheets, with the flexfrosts, movements in the edible paper are no longer a problem. Véronique even shares a short video with us (Click here to see the video) to show you how to make a beautiful 3d 100% edible bow using the flexfrost sheets.
Then there are different formats available on the store for you to choose according to your needs.
So far, do you follow me? It's not too complicated with this cheat sheet, is it?
Edible image tutorial
To use edible images, here's how I do it.
1.A: To begin, open the bag that contains the images. The bag keeps the edible paper fresh. If it's brittle, I've got something for you. Find it at the end of the article in the frequently asked questions.
1.B: I cut out my edible images with the help of a pair of scissors. It gives me more precision.
1.C: I remove most of the white outline but it is not mandatory. With more delicate images, keep a border of white paper around it for extra strength.
1.D : Repeat this step for every image.
2: Keep the images until use in the airtight bag that Maman Gato et Cie provides (to prevent the images from cracking or drying out).
3.A: Then I roll my sugar paste in white color. Why white? To avoid affecting the colors of the images. We want it to be bright and vibrant so we use a white paste underneath.
My sugar paste sets quite well, it dries quickly and keeps its shape without additives. But if yours remains soft for a long time, I advise you to add tylose to your sugarpaste so that it can keep its shape.
3.B: For the thickness of the dough, I recommend 1/8 in (3 mm), you don't need thicker.
3.C: To glue the images to the dough, I use a mixture of 94% alcohol and water. If you don't have 94% alcohol, use 40% clear alcohol. A white rum or vodka will do. In the case where the alcohol is lower, you do not have to add water.
3.D: Apply a thin layer of alcohol to the sugarpaste. Do not saturate the paste too much with alcohol, you just want the image to stick. If you add too much liquid to the dough, you could damage the edible image.
4.A: Peel the edible image from the plastic backing.
4.B: Place it on the moisten sugar paste.
4.C: With the help of your finger, make sure that the entire surface of the image is glued to the dough. Avoid touching the sticky part of the dough.
Repeat for all images.
5.A: Now, with an exacto or craft knife, cut out the sugarpaste around the images.
5.B: Each image will therefore be on its own sugar paste which will set, dry and retain its shape.
5.C: Let the images dry away from LIGHT and dust until the paste hardens. In general, overnight is sufficient for the paste to be dry.
6.A: For the "standing" images on the cake, roll a sausage of white sugarpaste.
6.B: Use a smoother to roll the sausage evenly.
6.C: Cut off a small enough section and insert a lollipop stick into it.
6.D: Moisten the front stick so that it is well secured inside the sausage.
6.E: Glue the sugar paste sausage with water behind an edible image and let it dry before sticking it in a cake.
7.A : Decorate your cake and have fun!
Here is the tutorial video I made for the cake that came with all those edible images.
To get printed edible images (ready to use), it's here.
If you'd like to glue an edible image directly onto a buttercream cake, here's how.
Can we freeze a cake with an edible image?
Yes, absolutely. The edible image responds well to freezing on a cake. For defrosting, do it quietly, 24 hours in the fridge before taking it out at room temperatureYes, absolutely. The edible image responds well to freezing on a cake. For defrosting, do it slowly, 24 hours in the fridge before taking it out at room temperature.
Why is my edible image melting?
Generally, an image that melts is due to the fact that it has been in contact with too much moister. That's why I invite you to use alcohol that eventually evaporates.
Also, if the temperature shock between the inside of the fridge and the outside is too big, condensation will form on the surface of the cake which could harm your edible image. Avoid rapid big change in temperature.
Why does my image peels off from the sugar paste?
Normally, a picture will peel off if it hasn't been stuck on the cake surface well. Use your finger to make sure all sides are glued to the surface from the start.
Why has my image changed color?
Edible images may change color if exposed to sunlight. It is best to keep them in an envelope away from light.
Why is my image cracking?
An image cracks when dry. Generally, it's something that happens when the image is old or has spent a lot of time outside of its envelope. Don't panic, you can fix it. I invite you to watch my tutorial (Click here to see the video).
No more spending hours cutting shapes or painting on your cakes. Edible images will save you so much time.
Plus, with Mélanie's service from Maman Gato et Cie, there's no need to stress anymore! Your prints will always be perfect, you order online and you receive by post in a few days.