Your tea party for one or many always has room for a pretty petit four cake. Petits Four cakes are dainty icing-coated mini cakes. These delightful cakes and filling can be of any variety of your preference. So, add these Rose Petit Four Cake for a delicate touch to your dessert tables.
Recipe and photos By Ellen Easton – All Rights Reserved. Check out more of Ellen Easton’s Tea Travels™ articles and recipes.
- 1 store-bought Pound cake or sponge cake (any flavored pound or sponge cake of your choice). If desired, you may make your own cakes for this recipe. You want a cake that is not too light and crumbly, but one that will hold up under the slicing and decorations that comes next.
- Filling (Nutella, fruit preserves, lemon curd, etc. of your choice)
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, room temperature*
- 1/4 cup milk, room temperature
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons of rose water or rose extract
- 1 pound box powdered sugar (confectioners' sugar)
- Pastel food coloring (to color icing)
Either refrigerate or freeze the cake (once chilled or frozen, the cake can be easily cut into different shapes).
Prepare Buttercream Icing; set aside.
Use a long serrated knife, slice the cold cake in half or layers (depending on the size of your cake). You can measure the sides and mark them with toothpicks to help guide the knife; gently saw your way through. Cover cake layers with plastic wrap until you're ready to assemble them. Spread the filling (of your choice) between the layers. Place the top layer over the top of the filling.
Remove any crumbs from your work area.
Position the petit fours 2 inches apart on a thin mesh wire cake rack suspended over a baking pan (to catch drips).
Once your cake layers are filled, the simplest decorating technique for petits fours is to glaze or frost the top of the whole cake, and then cut it into shapes (squares, rectangles, rounds, or triangles, as desired). Each individual Petit Four cakes are usually about 1-inch square.
Allow frosted cakes to sit until they are dry, then remove the cakes from the rack, trimming any excess frosting away from the bottoms with a sharp knife.
Once your cakes are baked and cooled, they can be wrapped well and frozen for up to one month. Thaw the wrapped cakes at room temperature.
In a large mixing bowl, combine butter, milk, vanilla extract, rose water or rose extract, and powdered sugar; and mix at a low speed until smooth. If stiffer icing is needed or the weather is very warm, add a little extra sugar.
To create pastel colors, divide icing into a separate bowls for each desired color. Using a toothpick, add one drop of color at a time and mix until desired color is reached.
Chocolate Buttercream Icing: To create a chocolate icing, add 2 tablespoons of dark cocoa to the above recipe.
* Use vegetable shortening when pure white icing is needed.
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Ellen Easton, author of Afternoon Tea~Tips, Terms and Traditions (RED WAGON PRESS), a lifestyle and etiquette industry leader, keynote speaker and product spokesperson, is a hospitality, design, and retail consultant whose clients have included The Waldorf=Astoria and Plaza Hotels. Easton’s family traces their tea roots to the early 1800s, when ancestors first introduced tea plants from India and China to the Colony of Ceylon, thus building one of the largest and best cultivated teas estates on the island.
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