Are you ready to get that beautiful drip cake off your Pinterest board and onto your cake stand? There’s currently no more Instagrammable baked good for a spring party, bridal shower, wedding, or Mother’s Day brunch. We knew Hallmark Designer Kelly C. and Union Hill Studio Business Director Bernard S. would have this trendy technique mastered, so of course we asked them to host a workshop for other Hallmark creatives. Get out your mixers and join us, won’t you?
What you’ll need for a flower-topped drip cake
- One frosted naked cake (follow this tutorial)
- White chocolate candy melts
- Heavy cream
- Buttercream frosting
- Glass bowl
- Condiment bottles (like these)
- Half-sheet pan or cookie sheet
- Parchment paper
- Pastry bags
- Star tips (1M and smaller)
- Offset spatula
Get your cake ready
Follow the instructions in our post on making a naked cake to get your layers frosted and ready. (Obviously, you can do a full coat of buttercream on your cake, but the simple, naked cake is a nice contrast to the drippy white chocolate goodness and the extravagant pile of buttercream roses on top.)
Pipe some buttercream flowers
To get started, tint a few colors of your buttercream icing: A couple of different colors for the flowers, and a little bit of green for the leaves.
Lay some parchment over a half-sheet tray to hold your flowers. Making them ahead of time instead of piping them directly onto the cake gives you a chance to get them just right—and to arrange them more easily.
With the star tip attached to your pastry bag, pipe rosettes onto the parchment. Use a smaller tip to make little green leaves.
Once you’ve covered the tray with lovely buttercream decorations, stick it in the freezer to harden them up.
To make the flowers, start in the middle and work your way out—if you start from the outside, it looks less like a rose and more like a spiral. (Bernard: “I know it sounds weird. Just trust us.”)
Put the drips on the drip cake
Start by making a simple ganache: Stir together a cup of white chocolate candy melts and a quarter-cup of heavy cream in a glass bowl. Pop it into the microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring when it comes out to check the…drippiness.
- Kelly checks for “meltiness” by dipping a knife in the white chocolate and pulling it out to check the drippage. If you over-nuke and it gets too thin, just let it sit out for a bit.
- Mixing food coloring with candy melts isn’t always super-successful, so start with melts in the color you want your drips to be.
Immediately transfer your ganache to the condiment bottles.
Squeeze the ganache around the top edge of the cake a little bit at a time. You can also use a spoon to puddle the drippy stuff and push it over the edge. If you squeeze the bottle longer without moving it, you’ll get lower drips. If you move more slowly, they’ll be shorter and wider.
Bernard confides: “I’ve seen so many different ways of doing this. It always looks good.” So don’t worry.
Once you’ve dripped your drip cake, use the ganache to fill in the top of the cake.
- Your cake must be cold to for this technique to work. Pop it in the fridge for at least 10-15 minutes before you start.
- Work fast so your ganache doesn’t harden in the condiment bottle.
Decorate the top of the drip cake
Once your cake is appropriately drippy, get those buttercream flowers out of the freezer.
Use an offset spatula to lift each flower or leaf off the parchment and place it on top of the cake.
- Start with two of the bigger flowers—get them where you want them—and fill in around with smaller rosettes and leaves.
- If the flowers are wiggly, stick them down with a little dab of room temperature buttercream.
Seriously. It this not the most lovely thing you’ve ever seen? And all those leftover buttercream rosettes…it’s enough to make you weep with joy.
Our goal is to wow you with so many gorgeous cakes and simple, no-fail instructions you have no choice but to make one for yourself. (Okay, or for your family. Whatever.) And when you do, we hope you will share them with us on Instagram at @think.make.share, or in our Facebook group.
Photography by Lindsey M. and Amy S.