Wilton Cake Pans
Wilton cake pans are thought by many to be the standard in cake baking and decorating. From high quality conventional round cake pans in many sizes to character cake pans Wilton has them all. Their specialty cake pans include characters like:
- Strawberry Shortcake
- Hello Kitty
Although the pans are easy to use for almost anyone there are some tricks and tips that can make creating a unique cake design easier for anyone, novice or experienced cake decorator.
History of Wilton Enterprises, Inc
Wilton has been in business since 1929. It was then that Dewey Wilton opened a school to teach the chefs and caterers of Chicago how to decorate cakes and make candy. His classes were not inexpensive; the aspiring pastry chef who wanted to learn Wilton's techniques paid twenty-five dollars per lesson.
By 1939 Wilton was traveling and teaching pulled sugar techniques all over the country. When the first ad for the school was circulated in Bakers Helper magazine in 1946 seven students signed up for the two week course. The cost to them was $150.00, an astronomical sum in those days.
The mail order business was started out of the Wilton home in 1959 to fill the demands of consumers for these specialty products. As it continued to grow more items were added until the company became the name in cake decorating that it is today.
Wilton Cake Pans Slideshow
Wilton retires and introduces character and shaped pans regularly. The retired pans become somewhat of a collectors item; they can often be found on eBay. The pans are so well made that they will last for decades if they are taken care of. Some of the character baking pans that Wilton currently is offering are featured in the following slideshow. If you see one you are interested in you will find a link in the Amazon links section of this article.
Decorating a Shaped Cake with Buttercream
All of the character cakes and shaped Wilton cake pans come with specific decorating instructions. Generally the cakes use the same methods and steps for decorating.
- First frost the sides and background areas of the cake with buttercream frosting recipe. You want this to be a smooth layer and it is done with a spatula or knife.
- Next add the outlining. This is usually done with the piping tip and the individual cake will tell you what colors to use.
- After that you will add the colored frosting; usually with a star tip.
- Finally you will add the message and finish the bottom edge with shells, scallops, or other design.
Decorating a Shaped Cake with Fondant
Once you have gotten used to decorating cakes with buttercream you can try fondant. It is a little more difficult to work with but the end result is usually spectacular.
- The first thing to do is to cover the entire cake with a thin layer of buttercream.
- Roll out the base layer of fondant using lots of confectioner's sugar and lay it over the cake.
- Smooth the fondant over the cake and gently mold it into the details.
- Now use the other colors of fondant to create the details. You can use the raised areas of the Wilton cake pan as a guide to help you get the details exactly right.
- Brush the backs of the fondant designs with water and stick them gently to the cake.
Tips for Using Wilton Character Cake Pans
- Use a baking spray with flour rather than greasing and flouring the pans. The cake will come out cleaner and none of the details will be lost.
- Allow the cake to cool for 15 minutes in the pan before turning it our on your cake board.
- If you know other people who enjoy decorating cakes consider making a cake pan library where you can borrow eachother's pans.
- Use a thinner icing for base coats of buttercream and writing.
- Use thicker icing for stars, shells, scallops and other designs.
- Paste food color gives the most reliable color.
- Have a different bag set up for each color you will be using. It takes too much time to stop and wash the bags between uses.
Items You Will Need
Besides your cake recipe and frosting supplies you will need the following:
- Cake pan
- Icing bags
- Couplers for each bag
- Tips (the decorating instructions should give you a list of tips you will need)
- A spatula
- Cake board (cardboard) or a cookie sheet covered with aluminum foil
- Instructions for the cake you have chosen (usually on the paper label that is stuck to the pan)
You Can Make a Unique Cake
Anyone can make a unique cake with the special pans and easy instructions Wilton provides. If you find that you really love making cakes you may want to take a class. Wilton cake decorating classes are available at many hobby stores that sell Wilton cake products