You’ve probably heard of wafer paper before, but have you used it yet?
Wafer paper is an edible potato starch paper that has a smooth side and a textured side. It comes in different thickness for all your edible project needs. It works great for transferring images onto jelly, for placing on top of icing laying flat, to use as stand-up props on your desserts… You can get really good quality images despite the textured nature of the paper. Many people don’t know about its many uses when it comes to edible decoration.
Wafer paper can be applied onto cakes really easily. Simply moisten it using water and apply. The standard wafer paper is flavorless. An advantage of it’s lack of flavor means it doesn’t affect the flavor of the cake you’re applying it to. For those preferring a sweeter taste, you may also find it available in a sweetened presentation, which has a slight vanilla flavor.
But, how far can you go with it? You can really do lots of things!
As I personally really love abstract decorations, I usually cut pieces and paint them to create unique art on my cakes. However, you can also:
- Use decorative paper punches to create intricate wafer paper cutout designs, and apply them to an entire cake tier for a stunning lattice effect. Choose simple or complex die-cut designs (the possibilities are off the hook!), and use them as motifs or as an all-over covering.
- Creating wafer-paper flowers. It can make your cake bloom like a bouquet, or you can add individual blossoms here and there for an spectacular effect. You can make wafer paper flowers in pretty much any shape, color or size you want, and take your cues from nature or invent wacky space-age flowers. Go nuts. It’s your cake!
Starting with a freehand-cut strip of wafer paper, roll it just so to create different kinds of flowers. Play around and see what flower styles you come up with.
Using templates, you can also trace, cut and form petals, and attach them with piping gel to create beautiful blossoms. You can also add complements like greenery and simple, colorful butterfly cutouts.
- Want to turn your cake into a collage? Use printed sheets of wafer paper and you’ll get exactly what you are looking for. Opportunities are limitless!
- Paint on it! Even if you want to get a straight look or something edgier, pick your colors, grab a brush and make it happen!
What to know when painting on wafer paper:
- Use thinner brush to get into tight spots – to color whole sheets, use a wide flat edged brush or blot on with paper towel dipped in mixture.
- Blot excess paint after with clean paper towel and allow to sit overnight so excess painting can dissipate before using to make décor.
- Make sure to test your mixture on scrap pieces of wafer paper before coloring whole pieces or sheets, to ensure right consistency.
- Sometimes, too much color may not be deep enough, but using too little can make the paint look streaky, spotty or clumpy.
- Do not overload brush with paint for first stroke as it can “bleed” into paper too much.
- Works best on deeper colors but still works with lighter ones – the finer the dust, the better and more even the results.
- Test first.
Some advantages to enlight about wafer paper:
- The finished product is lightweight. Possible to make voluminous decorations which not damaging the structure of the cake.
- Thin and perfect for delicate decorations.
- It withstands a humid climate. Comparing to sugar and chocolate decorations, which are extremely sensitive to excessive humidity, wafer paper pieces can be made even in rooms with relative humidity above 70% or stored there for at least a couple of months.
How to store wafer paper decorations:
- Avoid refrigerating: Users should avoid refrigerating their wafer paper decorations because the humidity in the fridge can cause them to soften. This causes it to melt, changing its shape.
- Store in a cool dry place: Because wafer paper is mostly made of starch, it’s highly sensitive to water and moisture. Storing them in a cool dry place ensures they retain their shape by reducing the possibility of the decorations absorbing moisture and oil from the buttercream.
So, are you ready to try using wafer paper? Remember to let your imagination flow and share your results!