We make no secret of the fact that we worship at the shrine of sugar and the basilica of butter. We’re living the dessert dream and it’s only gotten more magical with the addition of Yolanda Gampp, our latest taste bud and most major of confectionary crushes. Not only does Yolanda (or as I like to call her Yo G…this moniker has yet to be approved by her) speak to our sweet teeth but she’s also the Queen of Cake, the Genius of Ganache, the Mistress of Meringue, the Lady of Layers, to name a few.
Yes, our long-lost Bite Me sister (again, another thing not yet bought into by Yo G) is the exceptional, self-taught talent behind the award-winning YouTube channel How To Cake It
and the skilled hand behind cakes that are (almost) too beautiful, fun and realistic to chow down on...
(Pictured Above: The Jumbo Candy Apple Cake. Recipe and photos from How to Cake It by Yolanda Gampp ©2017. Published by HarperCollins Publishers Ltd. All rights reserved.)
Woman, you’re not alone. We’d do almost anything for cake, especially if Yolanda herself bakes it for us. We’ve cooked up a few burning questions for our Icing Idol and here’s what we learned…
When did you start baking? Did you ever own an Easy Bake Oven?
I started baking when I was around 10. I think brownies were the first thing I ever made. I never owned an Easy Bake Oven, although I wanted one badly. My mother was afraid I would burn myself on the light bulb inside. Now I tease her and tell her it’s her fault that I am not further ahead in my career.
Favourite cake you’ve ever created?
My favourite cake is still my Roasted Thanksgiving Turkey
. There was something so satisfying about creating that cake. But there are a few cakes in my cake book that come in at a very close second.
Biggest cake fail?
I get asked this question a lot! I once delivered a cake to a venue and placed it in the walk in fridge where chef promised me he would store it until the event began. Long story short- he broke his promise and proceeded to leave it out in his 30 degree kitchen in the middle of June. The cake looked like horror movie in the end. The gum paste details melted and the food colouring was bleeding out of the fondant.
What are your greatest challenges as a cake artist and entrepreneur? What’s your best advice for those who want to have their cake and eat it too?
My greatest challenge by far is the amount of time my cakes take to make. It is a fact that I have long accepted, but one others find very hard to accept. My best advice would be to understand that cake decorating takes patience and practice above all else.
Who, in your career, excluding present company, left you star struck?
When I made an appearance on The Today Show, little did I know that Martha Stewart was there on the same day! She walked out of her dressing room and said “Hello” to everyone as she glided by. I couldn’t pick my jaw up off the floor.
Vanilla or chocolate?
Chocolate. Although I feel that a mixture of both best represents me.
Buttercream or fondant?
Buttercream. Italian Meringue Buttercream for the win.
Wanna know what really takes the cake? This month, Yolanda’s coming out with How to Cake It: A Cakebook
, a step-by-step guide on how you too can be a cake pro. While Lisa’s super excited to take her cake decorating skills to the next level, I’m super stoked to get to lick the bowls (and if you know Lisa the Germaphobe, this is a pipe dream as she’s not going to let me or my tongue within a mile of her mixing bowls) as she bakes her way through this drool-worthy book.
Oh, poor Heidi. But the supermodel need not fear because thanks to Yolanda (and her awesome videos and website and cookbook, oh my!), we can all bake. Here we’ve summarized 8 of Yolanda’s cake decorating tips from an interview with Delish
1. Dense chocolate/vanilla cakes won’t collapse when you sculpt them.
2. Bake time varies because oven temps vary – check cakes 5 minutes early.
3. Cool your cakes for 1 hour or longer in the pan on a cooling rack.
4. If you’re carving a cake, freeze it to cool it further.
5. For perfect cake layers, using a ruler, mark layer at 1¾” tall and use serrated knife to cut cake in half cleanly.
6. Use wooden dowels to keep a tall cake upright – place dowels for every 4-6”of height.
7. Coat each layer in simple syrup to lock in moisture.
8. Spread a thin layer of frosting on cake to fill any bumps or holes and then let it chill before adding fondant.
For a chance to win your very own copy of Yolanda Gampp's brand new HOW TO CAKE IT: A CAKEBOOK a step-by-step guide on how you too can be a cake pro, all you need to do is enter here and get ready to impress your friends and family with your amazing cake-making skills!
Yolanda's drool-worthy new book comes out October 24, 2017. To pre-order copies, click here