The old method of making frosting is no longer followed. It used to be thought necessary to beat the white of the egg to a very stiff froth, and then to add the sugar. Frosting made in this way is extremely hard when cut and after a few days can scarcely be cut at all. There are many kinds of frosting made just now, but none are prepared in this way, except for elaborate decorating. It is more satisfactory to have the cake cold to receive the frosting, for when it is hot, the sugar in the icing melts and often runs down the sides of the cake, giving the latter a most untidy appearance.
It requires very little extra labor to decorate a frosted cake, and it can be done as soon as the icing is cold and set. Funnels having ends of different shape may be purchased for this purpose. In place of a funnel, a cornucopia made of stiff writing-paper may be used. Cut off a little of the point of the cornucopia, fill the latter with frosting, and press it out at the small end, forming different shapes according to taste.
When a name or a date is to be placed on a cake, as is frequently the case with children's birthday cakes, etc., the icing may be colored with red sugar, dissolved chocolate or cochineal. Trace the name or date on the center of the cake with a pencil, and then follow the lines with the frosting. An easy and very pretty decoration is made by placing dry red sugar in the cornucopia and running it from the small end upon the soft icing, making a name, an initial or a date. The point of the cornucopia should be very small for this work.
One egg (white).
Eight table-spoonfuls of powdered sugar.
One-half tea-spoonful of vanilla.
Beat the white only enough to thin it, but not so as to make it frothy ; then add the sugar. In measuring the sugar have the spoonfuls even full - not heaped. Stir with a fork until the frosting is perfectly smooth and light; the longer it is beaten the finer it will be. Add the vanilla, and when it is well mixed in the frosting will be ready to use. Place all the frosting in the middle of the cake, and press it outward until almost rolling to the edge ; then set the cake in a current of cold air, if possible, to set the icing at once, so it will not run off the cake; or set it in the refrigerator. This quantity will make a very deep frosting for one cake only, and will really be sufficient for two ordinary-sized cakes.
When only one cake is to be iced and the frosting is not desired thick or deep, beat the egg thin, measure a large table-spoonful of it, and to this add four table-spoonfuls of the sugar. This will make a frosting of sufficient depth to suit most tastes. Frosting made in this way will form a crust on top, under which the sugar will keep soft.
Thicken plain frosting with two table-spoonfuls of prepared cocoanut, spread it upon the cake, and scatter dry cocoanut over the icing while still soft.
One ounce of chocolate (one square) Three table-spoonfuls of sugar. One table-spoonful of water.
Place these ingredients together in a small frying-pan, and stir over a hot fire until the mixture is smooth and glossy. Let the chocolate cool, add it to plain frosting, and use.
Take equal parts of grated chocolate and powdered sugar. Melt the chocolate over the steam of a tea-kettle, placing it for this purpose in an earthenware bowl set in the top of the kettle. When the chocolate is melted, add the sugar and a tea-spoonful of vanilla. Stir until nearly cool, and use.
This frosting is convenient to make when there is no powdered sugar at hand. The following will make an ample allowance for one cake :
Place the sugar, water and cream of tartar in a small sauce-pan set in another containing boiling water, and boil for six minutes. Do not stir the sugar at all, or it will granulate. Beat the egg stiff, and gradually add to it the boiling syrup, pouring the latter in a thin stream on the egg, and stirring rapidly. Beat for five minutes after the last has been added, and flavor to taste.
Twelve table-spoonfuls of sugar. Eight table-spoonfuls of milk.
Boil these together for five minutes in a saucepan set in another containing boiling water. Remove from the fire, and stir very vigorously until cooled. The frosting is then ready for use.
This sugar makes very fine frosting and does not require the use of an egg in the making. By confectioners' sugar, however, is not meant the ordinary powdered sugar, although both are about the same price.
For a Plain Frosting. - Add to four table-spoonfuls of the sugar a scanty table-spoonful of water or milk, stir well, and use. Add a little more sugar, if the frosting is not thick enough.
For a Chocolate Frosting. - Make the plain frosting, and add to it half a square of chocolate, which has first been put in a cup and set over steam to melt, being used when thoroughly melted.
One-half table-spoonful of gelatine. One-half table-spoonful of cold water. One table-spoonful of boiling water. , Pulverized sugar.
Lemon extract to flavor, the gelatine and cold water in a bowl, cover, and let the gelatine soak half an hour; then add the boiling water, stir until the gelatine is dissolved, and strain it through a fine wire strainer. Add sugar to thicken, and a tea-spoonful of the extract. Frost when the cake is perfectly cold.