Thursday, July 13, 2017

A Beginner's Guide to Using Russian Piping Tips

With all of the Russian talk in the news, wouldn't it be great if it was all about frosting cupcakes?

A beginner's (and honest!) guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

I'd seen Russian piping tips all over the internets, bought a set about 6 months ago, and promptly forgot about them. If you're like me and have a set buried in a kitchen drawer or you've been curious about them, here's the honest, beginner's guide to using them.

A beginner's (and honest!) guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

If you haven't seen Russian icing tips, there are many variations. Most come in a set with several tips. The idea is that the tip is so intricate, you can pipe a rose or another flower in one fell swoop.

how to use Russian icing tips | bakeat350.net

They were not as simple to use as I'd hoped. The key for me was frustration. The more frustrated and angry (yes, angry at a frosting tip), the prettier my piping became. 



A beginner's (and honest!) guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

You'll need a stiff buttercream. If you think your buttercream is thick enough, go ahead and stir in more sifted powdered sugar. You should be able to caulk your shower with it. THICK.

To start, spread a thin layer of frosting onto the cupcake with an offset spatula. This will help the piped flowers stick...and it also creates a prettier surface.

how to use Russian icing tips

Begin piping in the center with one flower. Then go around the edges. Squeeze the piping bag and pull up in a quick burst, releasing the pressure. Shorter flowers are better. When I talked about frustration helping, I was not releasing the pressure quickly or abruptly enough. As I would get frustrated and pipe in short bursts (while muttering under my breath, "why. aren't. you. working."), the flowers were prettier.



Using multiple colors in one pastry bag looks really pretty. I added pink and red along the sides of my piping bag and yellow down the center. You can see that the pink made it to the bottom of the bag first, but as I piped, the other colors emerged.

how to change a russian piping tip without a coupler

Be sure to use 16" piping bags instead of the smaller ones. You'll go through a lot of frosting and won't want to constantly be refilling. On that note, if you like the frosting mixture in your bag, but want to change tips (and you don't have a large coupler), here's what you can do. Place the new tip inside a fresh piping bag. Cut the bag you're using just above the tip. Place the bag filled with frosting inside the new bag. Voila!

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

I love the idea of adding leaves to the flowers. Leaves fill in any gaps and are just the right finishing touch.

Here are the tips I used for each flower variation.
(This is the set I purchased from Amazon.)

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net
(These tips are very similar but side-by-side, you can see the difference.)

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net
This was one of my favorites....maybe it's the combo of pink and red.

A beginner's guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

The truth is, I might use these now and again, but not on a regular basis. (Maybe only when I need to work out some frustrations.) ;) I also won't try to use ALL of the variations on one batch of cupcakes.

A beginner's (and honest!) guide to using Russian piping tips | bakeat350.net

*links are Amazon affiliate links

Have you given Russian piping tips a try? I'd love to hear your thoughts!


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