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Old 04-15-2009, 08:37 PM   #1
Senior Cook
Join Date: May 2006
Location: Chicago, soon to be Boston
Posts: 130
Pastry Bag Confusion

Hi everyone,

I haven't been around here in a while! This is mostly because I'm a junior in college and try not to procrastinate too much. But, I'm hoping all of you can help me out.

I've recently discovered one of my favorite things to make is cupcakes. So, I've actually started selling them to students. That way I can make them much more often -- because ingredients like butter are expensive and I live on a budget.

But anyway, I need them to look professional. I have icing tips and usually use them with a ziploc with a corner cut-off. However, I'm thinking I could make better-looking cupcakes more reliably if I have a pastry bag. So, I did an internet search to find out. Omg, confusion.

Disposable? Canvas? Plastic? Polyurathane? "soft"? Coupler? WHAT?!

Here's my question. Those disposable ones (like in the link below)...

Disposable Soft Pastry Bags: Professional Cake Pans and Cake Decorating Supplies

Do you just snip them and insert your pastry tip? How does the frosting not just come out of the sides (like it did last night when I tried using a zip-lock). I'm thinking I had the mistake with the zip lock because it was a small and light-weight one.

How do you know if you need a coupler? Ideally, I'd like one pastry bag I can wash and re-use, but do those need couplers? Or do you just put the tip in? Do couplers help?

Finally, where can you get pastry bags if NOT online? I live in Chicago (Evanston, really), so lord knows there should be somewhere around here.

Any help I can receive is MUCH appreciated. Thank you for helping me sort out my confusion.



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Old 04-15-2009, 09:18 PM   #2
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Tim, I decorate wedding cakes for a living and while I have canvas bags for big jobs, for my regular decorating I use the plastic disposable. The come in two sizes and are fairly cost effective (I buy them in 50 packs but you can buy smaller quantities and some supply stores will sell them singly.

If you cut the whole far enough down so that only the tip (about 1/4 to have inch is exposed, it should hold through the process. However, I have plastic couplers which one part goes into the slit bag, the tip fits on the outside of it and the other part of the coupler screws on (over a bit of the bag). This does two things - gives a tight fit and allows you to change tips with the same colour and bag. Couplers are not expensive. I have not checked your link but I am sure you can find them there. If not, let me know and I will find a link for you. If you have a Michael's store or cake supply store, you can get them there.

Living gluten/dairy/sugar/fat/caffeine-free and loving it!
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Old 04-17-2009, 09:12 AM   #3
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Chicago, soon to be Boston
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Thank you for the input!

That seems to make sense. I ordered some disposable ones and am going to see how they work. I might, in a while, order a non-disposable plastic one, but I think that can work. You've definitely helped clarify how these work.


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