How to make icing sugar decorations

Written by katie leigh
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Icing sugar, also known as powdered or confectioner's sugar, often is used to decorate and sweeten cakes that are not iced. Most of the time, this sugar is sprinkled in an even layer on top of the cake. However, a cake for a special occasion may call for icing sugar decorations instead. Icing sugar decorations are formed when the icing sugar is sprinkled over a paper doily placed on top of the cake. When lifted up, the paper doily leaves behind an intricate icing sugar pattern. Making icing sugar decorations is quick and simple.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Cake
  • Cake platter with lid
  • Large paper doily
  • Small mesh sieve
  • Icing sugar

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  1. 1

    Place the cake in the centre of a cake platter. This is important, because shifting the cake after it's decorated can smudge the sugar. Make sure the platter is on a level, flat surface.

  2. 2

    Center the paper doily on top of the cake. The doily should be just about large enough to cover the surface of the cake. Smooth the doily.

  3. 3

    Put about 1/2 cup of icing sugar in a small mesh sieve. Hold the sieve over the centre of the cake. Tap the edge of the sieve gently while moving it in a circular motion, from the centre of the cake out. Distribute an even layer of icing sugar on the doily, making sure to coat all the openings in the paper.

  4. 4

    Grasp opposite edges of the doily and, keeping it flat and level, lift it straight up off the cake. Do not drag or pull the doily across any part of the cake when removing it, as this will smudge the icing sugar.

  5. 5

    Cover the cake with the platter's lid immediately. This will keep the icing sugar decoration from smudging. Keep the cake covered until it's served.

Tips and warnings

  • This method also works well with other powdery types of decorations, such as cocoa powder and cinnamon.

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