Pros: makes beautiful cupcakes and deviled eggs
Cons: I can no longer get away with frosting from a can and a knife.
If you have small children, eventually you are going to face the problem of cupcakes. You see, kids seem to go to events often where cupcakes are expected. It's a birthday and the kidlet is at preschool? Send in cupcakes that day. Valentine's Day? Cupcakes! Fourth of July picnic? Cupcakes!
Without the proper tools, you have one of two options when presenting cupcakes. You can either use the old "I bought a can of frosting and I spread it on the cupcakes with a knife" method which does not earn you any brownie points on the Mom's Competitiveness Scale or you can buy the cupcakes from either the local grocery which will mean that they taste like cardboard or a frou frou bakery which will mean that you are bankrupt and will have to survive on Ramen noodles for the next month.
My suggestion to you is to buy a Wilton Large Drop Flower Decorating Tip and learn how to use it! This tip carries the number 2D in tip parlance.
So, what can you do with this tip?
This is the most basic decoration you can make. You simply hold the tip perpendicular to the surface you want to decorate and squeeze the bag. The harder you squeeze, the more full your flower will be. You can make it look fancier by using another tip and putting a small ball of icing in the center. These look lovely simply centered on a cupcake.
These are much like drop flowers except you turn your hand as you squeeze the icing, making the flower "swirl". You can put four or five on one cupcake, covering the surface.
This is the technique I personally use most often. Instead of simply turning your hand, you move the tip in a full 360 degree rotation. You are left with a gorgeous swirl on top of the cupcake and then, if you wish, you can spray with Wilton Color Mist for an airbrushed effect or put an icing sugar decoration on or sprinkle with colored sugars - basically anything you can dream up. This is the basic decorating technique that both my local grocery and local frou frou bakery use on their cupcakes.
I love me some deviled eggs but I do not love the way they look when you simply just fork the yolk mixture into the shells. It just looks messy. Using this tip, I simply squeeze out using the figure piping technique taught during Wilton's Course 1. A sprinkle of paprika and my eggs are beautiful. I've also used this technique with cherry tomatoes and a crab salad.
I only tried this once and never will again because it hurt my wrists far too much as cookie dough tends to be very stiff. I had made a batch of spritz dough and intended to use it with my piece o' crap Pampered Chef Cookie Press but that did not work out. Since I had the dough, I pulled out my largest decorating tip besides the Cake Icer Decorating Tip and started pushing out the flowers. Ouch. You can do it but get a decent cookie press instead.
The other thing you need to know about this decorating tip is that it is a large tip which means you can use it with a large coupler, but not a standard sized one. I usually just use a disposable bag with it but you can use a featherweight or parchment triangles. The tip cleans easily in soapy water with the Wilton Tip Brush, or you can put it in a mesh bag or specialty dishwasher basket to run it through the dishwasher.