Fondant is the best replacement for adult play dough you will ever come across. Fondant really takes your cakes to the next level and it allows amateur bakers to decorate cakes that any baker would be proud of. For an awesome course on how to profit from your baking, sign up for Cake Decorating For Fun and Profit today from Udemy.
Fondant is one of the most versatile decorating options for cakes and you don’t have to take weeks of classes to learn how to create fantastic decorations for every occasion. Fondant can be rolled out to cover your cakes, cut, molded, colored and even sculpted which means that the only limitation of fondant as a cake decorating method, is your imagination.
This article will discuss how to prepare your fondant, how to color your fondant, how to cover a cake, and how to create awesome decorations to use on your cake.
How to Prepare Your Cake and Fondant
There are two things you need to do before you can cover your cake with fondant. You need to prepare your cake and you need to prepare the fondant for rolling. It’s important to realize that although fondant can hide a lot of things, the smoother your buttercream layer on your cake is, the smoother the fondant will look when applied to your cake.
You need to ensure that your cake has been finished with a thin layer of buttercream and that the layer has as few blemishes and flaws as possible. Deep gouges and holes will show through your fondant layer. It is also best to place your cake in the refrigerator for a while to allow the butter cream to set properly before you apply the fondant layer. Buttercream can of course be used on its own to make a stunning looking cake. For some awesome ideas on how to use buttercream icing to complete your cake, read “Cake Decorating Tips: From Lipped Icing To Fur.”
When are ready to begin applying the fondant, you first have to knead your fondant to a workable consistency. If you are adding color to your fondant, then this is the time to add your colors. You should also make sure you color enough fondant because matching colors after the fact is really difficult so always make sure you color more fondant than you need to cover your cake.
Once you’ve added your food coloring you are ready to knead the fondant. Think of play dough for an idea of how soft the fondant should be. If the fondant becomes too sticky, you can add a mixture of confectioner’s sugar and cornstarch to make it less sticky. Once your fondant feels like play dough, use a rolling pin and rolling mat to roll out your fondant. Make sure you spread a layer of the confectioner’s sugar and cornstarch mixture onto your mat to prevent your fondant from sticking to the mat.
To cover a cake, you need to roll the fondant evenly. The layer should be about an eighth of an inch thick to make sure the fondant doesn’t stretch too much or tear as you cover the cake. Once the fondant has been rolled out, you can use a rolling pin to carefully lift and place the fondant over your cake. To use the rolling pin, slowly roll the fondant over the rolling pin as though it is fabric and then gently lift the fondant and place it over the cake. A second pair of hands often helps here. It’s also important to make sure that the fondant not only covers the cake but that there is sufficient fondant around the cake to ensure that the whole cake is covered.
Now you need to slowly and methodically smooth the fondant onto the cake. Start at the top and using the palms of your hand and gently make sure the fondant is smooth and shiny. Work down the sides of the cake, making sure you don’t tear the fondant. Move the extra fondant out of the way as you move down the cake. It’s a lot like working with fabric at this stage. Just take your time and the folds will slowly disappear. Once you have reached the bottom of the cake, you need to trim off the excess fondant as close to the base of the cake as possible. Rather trim too little and trim again than trimming too much because it is really hard to patch bits of fondant once they have been trimmed.
How to Create Fondant Decorations
Now that you have a beautifully covered fondant cake, it’s time to make your decorations. Fondant is extremely versatile for making decorations for your cake. In fact creating decorations is really only limited by your imagination. For a course on how to make beautiful roses, berries, anemones and hydrangea flowers, sign up for Cake Decorating: Winter Anemone Wedding Cake today to learn to create a stunning wedding cake.
One thing to bear in mind when making your decorations is that fondant dries slowly, so for bigger or thicker sculptures or for sculptured flowers, you may need to add a hardening agent like Tylose powder to ensure that your decorations harden properly.
Almost any stencil or mold can be used to create your fondant decorations. Just make sure the stencils and molds you choose are food safe.
One of my favorite decorations is to use fondant to create fabric type effects for my cakes. Fondant feels and reacts a lot like fabric so creating swags and bows for your cakes can look awesome and they are relatively easy to create.
This is a fondant cake I made for my mother. I covered a heart shaped cake with fondant, made a few small roses and used a hair comb to create the quilted effect on the cake. The lace was made using a cake stencil.
And this was one I made for my niece using a Barbie doll. Fondant makes awesome fabric.
Show Off Your Creations
The greatest part of cake decorating for me, is sharing my creations with friends and family. It is truly a gift that keeps giving because you can create new cakes for every occasion. But remember to take a few pictures of your work of art before it’s consumed. A course in Basic Food Photography will show you how to take snapshots of your cakes before they disappear.
And finally, fondant is not only a great decorating medium for cakes, fondant is great for decorating cookies as well. Individually decorated cookies make an awesome gift. For a course on cookies, sign up to Learn The Pastry Arts – The World Of Cookies today and let your imagination run wild.