My brother is getting married in October, so on Sunday the bridesmaids hosted a bridal shower for his fiancee, Marie. The atmosphere was designed to be pretty elegant, and we loosely planned the event around a theme of “wine and cheese.”
Because the attendance was going to be quite large, I knew early on that I wanted to make my first two-tier cake. I considered a few different designs, but all incorporated grapes. Some involved piping grape shapes out of buttercream, but the ones I loved the most used real grapes to garnish the cake.
You’re not seeing things–the grapes have a little bit of a sparkle to them. I made “frosted” grapes to give them a little extra something. It was my first time using such a method, so it required a little trial and error. Most of the directions I found for frosted grapes involved dipping the grapes in egg whites and then dipping them in sanding sugar. I didn’t want to feed raw egg whites to strangers, so I found an alternative–I was able to make an “egg white solution” using meringue powder and water. And it’s salmonella-free! :)
Anyway, the trial and error part came into play when it came time to figure out how much solution to leave on the grapes to dip them. At first, I was leaving too much, so the sugar was clumping up. I eventually figured out that dipping the grapes, then dabbing them with paper towels worked to get a lot of excess moisture off, then I’d dip them. If you’re interested in frosted grapes, just Google–there are tons of recipes/directions out there.
The night before the shower, I frosted the cakes, assembled them (again, if you want to know how to securely assemble two tiers, Google is a great resource), then added the shell borders. I also piped frosting onto the cupcakes, and, of course, prepared the sugared grapes.
The morning of the shower, I transported the cake, cupcakes, and grapes to the shower location separately. Once there, I got to work on garnishing everything. I topped each cupcake with a single frosted grape. For the cake, I used a large bunch of grapes for the top, then used smaller bunches on other areas of the cake. To help secure the grapes to the cake, I piped dollops of frosting in the spots where I wanted to stick them, using the frosting as “glue.” As a finishing touch, I added little beads of frosting all over the sides of the layers.
AboutI'm Heather. I just turned 30. I'm happily married, and mommy to the most beautiful little girl in the world (what, you're saying I could be biased?). Determined DIYer and homeowner. Sarcastic. A perfectionist. A bleeding-heart liberal. Frugal. Loves a little dog way more than many humans. Loves food, hates exercise (it's an ongoing battle). A loyal football fan. I love to laugh. Value family and friends above all else. Vie to be a world traveler.
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