Since childhood, our favorite part of a birthday cake has been the buttercream roses.
No matter whose cake it was, we had to have a slice with a rose.
Then Valentine’s Day is your opportunity to practice piping frosting roses.
Do we have to mention, you get to eat all the “learning mistakes?”
(We don’t want to demotivate you, but tutorials often recommend that beginners work with Crisco until ready to take on frosting. Rationale: You can put the Crisco flowers back into the can and re-use it. Bah!)
There are numerous tutorials on YouTube. We’ve included two below:
One for roses to put on a cake.
One for cupcake roses: The basic one in the second tutorial is pretty easy.
If you don’t have a piping set and don’t want to buy one until you’re sure you want to pursue the craft, see if you can borrow one.
People often have a set they rarely use (we have two sets!).
HAVE A PIPING PARTY
You can turn piping flowers into a friends-and-family event.
You can make it BYO piping bags, tips and, for cake flowers, a #7 flower nail).
Or, to make a real party out of it, you can provide these relatively inexpensive items as party favors.
Consider hiring a professional—a specialty cake baker or the decorator from your local bakery to guide the group.
You can tell guests to bring what they want to decorate (un-iced cupcakes, cakes), or provide them.
If you’d like to make the chocolate cupcakes with pink roses (top photo), here’s the recipe.
There’s chardonnay in the frosting!
If you really get into it, pick up a copy of The Contemporary Buttercream Bible.
After you master roses, there’s an entire garden of frosting flowers to pursue—from anemones, sweet peas and ranunculus to billy balls (like pom moms), succulents and sunflowers.
We found the chart below on Pinterest, attributed to the Instagram account of My Sister Bakes.
(Attention social media gods: We need a reliable system for attribution so the originators can get credited.)
Here it is: Envision a cupcake party you created, with these different buttercream flowers.