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Friday, December 28, 2012

Royal Icing Sardines

A couple years ago I produced a production of the play "Noises Off," which heavily features sardines. If only I'd known how to make these then; what a cute decoration for cast party cupcakes these would have been. All you'll need to pipe sardines, (or, as my husband observed, airplanes), are white stiff consistency royal icing, oval tip #55, round tips #12 and #5, petal tip #101, a flower nail, a glue stick, parchment paper squares, a Styrofoam block to rest the nail in, a dusting pouch filled with a 50/50 mix of powdered sugar and cornstarch, periwinkle Color Dust, silver Pearl Dust, soft decorating brushes, round toothpicks, and black food coloring like AmeriColor Soft Gel Paste. Start by sticking a parchment square to the flower nail with a dab from the glue stick. 
 Hold the #12 tip just above and at a right angle to the surface. Squeeze while moving the tip along for about 1.25".
 Touch your fingertips to the dusting pouch and use them to taper the ends.
 Switch to the #55 tip and squeeze out two short bursts of icing for the tail.
 Switch to the #101 tip to pipe the fins on the top and bottom. You might want to practice these on a fingertip first; they're a little hard to explain, but as long as they're more or less the shape of fins your fish should look more like a fish and less like a plane.
 Allow the icing to firm up for a few minutes, then apply some of the periwinkle dust along the back with a decorating brush.
 Dust the fish completely with the silver dust.
 Pipe a dot of icing for the eye with the #5 tip and flatten it slightly with a dusted fingertip.
 Paint a line of black dots of food coloring along the body with the pointy end of a toothpick (just dab the toothpick; go easy or you'll pierce the icing).
 Smash the other end of the toothpick against the countertop and use it to dab in the pupil of the eye when the icing is fairly hard. Good luck convincing folks that these merely LOOK like sardines; the resemblance does not extend to the taste!

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