Mirror glaze cakes are cakes that have a shiny, glossy outer surface. This is an old French decorating technique & the "mirror" finish is made by pouring a glaze over a frozen cake. Last year, this style of cake went viral online & if you do a quick google search, you'll see tonnes of pictures!
The glaze itself is made of sugar, water, white chocolate, condensed milk, gelatine powder & vanilla extract. So it is a very sweet type of icing, but once poured over the cake, it's such a thin layer that you can't really taste it at all.
With this months heart cake, we gave this baking kit a medium difficulty level. But honestly, don't let that deter you at all!
There are two parts that we'd consider 'challenging'. The first is, you have to make sure that your cake covered with icing is as smooth as possible. This is because once you pour the glaze over it, any bumps & ridges will appear through the glaze.
Pro tip: Once the icing has firmed up, if you have a metal spatula, like this one, drip it in warm water & wipe it dry. Then go over the icing once more to get a smooth finish. Easy!
A mirror cake is made up of three main components:
- Cake base of some kind
- White icing that will firm up (if cake base is not already white in colour)
- Mirror glaze
The most popular way is to make a mousse cake & pour a glaze over that. But it can be any type of cake base! Whats most important is that your base cake is covered with a whitish icing, so that once you pour the mirror glaze over it, the colour will pop!
It's recommended that you freeze your iced cake overnight so that a) the glaze will set faster & also (in the chance) that your glaze is a bit hot, it won't do too much damage to your cake underneath.
With our red velvet cake, which is covered with cream cheese icing, long as you freeze it for 1-2 hrs or until the icing is firm, it was fine to pour our glaze over it.
You will need bowls, spoons, a saucepan, whisk/spatula & a sieve.
Many people do use a handheld blender to mix their glaze. Great if you have one, but we don't think it's necessary. After pouring the mixture over the white choc, if you let it sit for about 5 mins, the heat from the mixture is generally enough to melt the white choc.
If you have a thermometer, use it, as the best temperature for pouring is when the glaze is at 35°C. But if you don't have one, don't bother buying one just for this. Make sure your glaze about lukewarm (ie. you can easily dip your finger into the mixture), then it should be fine to pour.
Yes, you can make it a few days in advance. To store, cover with cling wrap, ensuring the cling wrap is touching the surface of the glaze & refrigerate. Best to keep it in a heat-safe bowl/jug so that, once you're ready to use it, you can pop it in the microwave to heat it up.
But we do strongly recommend that you pour your glaze on the day of serving.
You'll need to create a 'dripping station' to allow the glaze to drip off your cake. In our video below, we used a few cups & a baking tray to capture the excess glaze.
We strongly recommend you pour the glaze over your cake on the day that you want to serve it. But generally speaking, it can last a few days, tho we've found, it does depend on how cold your fridge is.
Eg. Using my home fridge, after refrigeration, it'd still remained shiny. But the next day, due to condensation, it looked cloudy in appearance. If that happens to your cake too, if you wet your finger with water & gently rub it over your cake, it does make the glaze shiny again.
Don't worry! You can re-use the residue glaze that has accumulated on your tray, but do work quickly! Once your glaze has set, the newly poured glaze will sit on top & not melt into the first layer.
If you glaze is one colour, you can pour it directly on the top of the cake & it'll naturally drip down the sides. But if you have made a design on the top, instead, carefully drip it down the sides like we've done in the video below:
If you have any other queries or think we've missed something that we should include in our Mirror Glaze Cake 101 blog let us know in the comment section!