Edible printing has been around for a while now, and it’s one of the most popular ways of combining baking with design and technology. There are many different techniques used to create edible cakes and confectionaries, however if you’re new to baking, or you haven’t experimented with edible printing before, then there’s probably a lot you don’t know – for example, the price of the ink, or what printer to buy. Depending on how much you want to get stuck into edible printing, the hobby can get costly, especially when you consider a single ink cartridge is around $90, or £50-60. Let’s take a look at some of the other things you’ll need to consider when it comes to edible printing!
Getting Ready to Print
Buying the right printer for edible paper is another article altogether, so we’re going to assume you’ve already got your necessary piece of technology up and running. First things first – you’re going to need to scan your picture to your computer, and whether you’re using the software that came with the printer, or something you’re used to using, this is probably the easiest part of the process.
Make sure you measure the size of your cake, and the size you want your photo to be printed. A great tip to get this right first time is to enlarge the image to 100 per cent, hold your stencil up to the computer screen, and reduce the size of the image until it fits perfectly. It’s best to make the image a tiny bit smaller than the stencil itself, just to be safe – you won’t want to be cutting off any edges!
Once you’ve got the size of your image spot on, you’ll have to try and fit as many as you can onto one screen, and thus one piece of edible paper. Before printing, make sure your ink levels are suitable, and clean the printing head if some of the colours are not running correctly. If in doubt, reset the printer, but be sure to save your document before doing so. Finally, print one copy, and see if there are any changes to be made. Even the slightest alteration can make a huge difference! Visit http://www.makebake.co.uk/edible-printing for more advice on printing software, as well as some great printers!
Applying the Sheets
When it comes to applying the icing sheets, there are a few ways to go about it. You should not that the sheets will be easier to ‘work with’ if they have been left in a humid place– you’ll probably find that the sheets tear if you use them immediately after printing. Don’t leave them out for too long though, as they can become too brittle to use. 10-15 minutes should be enough time to let them settle.
If you’re not using the sheet for a day or two, store it in a cool and dry place, and even cut out your images or shapes beforehand, in case the sheet itself becomes tough. The use of edible sheets isn’t yet an exact science, so it’s really all down to trial an error!