Covering a cake with fondant

So I thought I would do a very quick how to video showing you how easy it can’t (HA! Total typo, but I’ll leave it cuz I think I’m funny!! CAN be to cover a cake with fondant…..yes it takes practice…..sometimes lots of it.  With repetition though it DOES get easier!  

First I have a few pictures to show you from the process

 Start with your freshly kneaded  fondant, and a well dusted counter top. I’ve used corn starch….you can use powdered sugar if you dare…..Its never worked for me 😦 I find that it dries out the fondant that I’m rolling and it cracks easier.  So I stick with the starch!  
During the rolling process check often that your fondant isn’t sticking to the counter.   This is also when all 10,000 tiny air bubbles will start to present themselves to you….ya know, just to add some spice to your day. Just take a straight pin and give em a tiny poke….then roll them out with your rolling pin 👍🏻 
This is the fun part! Once you’ve lifted the dough onto your cake, you can use a fondant smoother to gently push any air bubbles off of the top of your cake.  (You can use your hand also, I find you get all the air out that way, but be sure you don’t dent your cake your frosting)

  If you find once the fondant is on that those pesky air bubbles are not all gone, wait until you’ve smoothed your cake and then poke em with your straight pin again and use the fondant smoother to rub them out.  Grrrrrrrrr…..this is something you should just get used to  
Time to play the fan game!  Start smoothing at your top edge…. As you work your way down, fan out the fondant all the way around, and just keep gently pressing it down. This can take a bit of time if you’re just getting used to fanning and spinning.  Stay with it…..your dough is going to want to bend and crease.  Just be patient and gently fan the creases out while you press it to the cake.   
  Once you’ve made it this far, you’re almost golden!  Now you can give it a quick smooth while pressing the bottom edge to the base of the cake. 

 
 Use a pizza cutter or an exacto knife to carefully trim away the excess.  
And BLAMMO! There you go….. A nice, smooth canvas to work on

 
Below you’ll find a quick video of the entire process…..bare with me, I’m new at this! 

 
You can follow the link below to my YouTube channel to watch the video too. Hopefully soon it will be full of helpful information. Don’t forget to subscribe! (Seriously, I don’t even know if my link works…..I’m sure you will all help me out and let me know though  :/   ) 

How to cover a cake with fondant

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Modeling Chocolate 101

If you’re not yet using modeling chocolate, you need to get with the program! Getcha modeling chocolate groove on!

Making and using modeling chocolate is so easy that after my first, uh…successful attempt at it, I was left wondering why I hadn’t been using it for the last few years!

I must admit, I tried to make it a few years back, and it was a horrible mess!  So much so, that I was too afraid to ever try it again.  I know now what mistake I made. (I’ll let you in on that in just a sec) In hind sight, I should’ve just corrected it immediately, tried again and lived happily ever after with my chocolate! Being the creature of habit that I am though, instead I chose to continue to comfortably work with fondant, and convince myself that the hype pertaining to modeling chocolate was just that…..hype.

Well I’m here to tell you, it isn’t just hype at all.  It’s AHHHHmazing! 

The first time I attempted to make it, I believe I used chocolate baking chips from the grocery store.  Yeahhh…..don’t do that!  Those types of chips, while great for cookies and such, contain too much oil for modeling chocolate. Leaving you with a greasy mess!

There are several different brands of melting chocolate out there, you can find them at your local craft store, or candy and cake supply stores.  My personal favorite is Merkens brand.  They’re never dry, and they melt smooth and easily. While you only need two ingredients to make modeling chocolate, it’s still quite a bit more expensive to make than fondant.  I am a money saving, for real penny pincher when it comes to certain things, but I am here to tell you that this is WELL worth the cost!

Not only is modeling chocolate a delicious alternative to fondant, it makes sculpting figurines a breeze. For real! It holds its shape almost immediately, and you can easily & quite literally “wipe out” the seams in your work. Once dry, it will hold its shape forevAH….well, I’ve never tested forever, but a long, long, time.  It also keeps at room temperature for months. As long as you wrap it tightly!

Now, this is still a happily ever after story but……..lets talk about modeling chocolate “cons” if you will, before I tell ya how to make it.

While you can certainly cover a cake with it, the consistency is NOT as stretchy as fondant.  So you run the risk of tearing it while covering.  It is possible however,  to mix your modeling chocolate 50/50 with fondant.  This still gives you the taste of the chocolate, but the pliability of fondant.  Win freaking win!  The only time I completely cover a cake with modeling chocolate, is when I’m working on a nice square cake.  Because the modeling chocolate holds its shape quicker than fondant, it makes getting those clean edges a breeze.  There is a con involved here…..modeling chocolate is HEAVY! Make sure you’re using a sturdy “cake”, and if you’re stacking said cake, be sure to dowel it well so that it doesn’t crush itself 😁.

Finally, one more con….just so you’re prepared.  Just like fondant, (ok worse than fondant) it does NOT like humidity!  Once modeling chocolate has been placed in the fridge, it will sweat it’s rump off after you take it out on a hot day. And I do mean you will have colored water runs all over your hard work! (Sad face). You can make it a little better by boxing your cake up nice and tight before refrigeration, but there is no complete cure for this.  So it’s best to let your figurines, flowers, etc…dry on your countertop and place them once your cake is ready to go.  Or else, avoid using it altogether during humid months.  Wha Wha Wha…..

Ok, I think at this point you probably just want me to tell you how to make it! So here’s what ya need:

  • 5 cups chocolate candy melts
  • 1 cup light corn syrup

If you’re waiting for more ingredients…..there aren’t any! That’s it! Woot!


Step one: place your candy melts in a large microwave safe bowl.


Microwave on high for one minute…….give it a good stir with a rubber spatula …..usually not much progress at this point.


Place back in the microwave on 50% power at 30 sec intervals, stirring in between, until it’s nice and smooth.  (Should you choose to forgo the recommended 50% power bit you will scortch ya chocolate…don’t say I didn’t warn ya)


Microwave your cup of corn syrup for 40 seconds.  Then mix with your chocolate.


This process doesn’t take long at all!  Once it starts pulling away from the sides of your bowl, you’re done!  Do not over mix!


Just turn your mixture out onto Saran Wrap, and wrap tightly. That’s it! It’s best to flatten out your chocolate so that it cools quicker.  As with fondant, try to do this a few days ahead of when you’ll need it.  If you need it right away you can place it in the refrigerator to cool, but this will also make it more difficult to knead later. I like to just leave it on my counter.


Once you’re ready to use it, break off what you need, and start the kneading process. If it’s too hard to work with, you can place it in the microwave for a few seconds to soften it up.  Because chocolate is greasy enough on its own, there is no need to use vegetable shortening on your counter top!  However, it will stick to any surface once it gets soft, so I always dust my counter with trusty old corn starch.

You can color your chocolate just as you would fondant using gel color, either during the kneading process, or you can add the color to the melted chocolate.

As usual….. One last thing!

Probably my most favorite reason for using modeling chocolate……it doesn’t need to be covered while you’re working with it!  Those of you that have worked with fondant know, after you break off a piece to use, the remaining needs to be covered tightly immediately! Otherwise it dries out, and becomes unusable.  Not so with modeling chocolate! This stuff could just sit on your counter all day, exposed to the elements, watching you get your cake on, and it doesn’t get angry at all!

I could go on and on about this stuff, but I’ll stop for now and let you get to work. Hopefully, I’ll get to see some of your modeling chocolate creations!

Have fun & enjoy!

Homemade ButtAHcream Marshmallow Fondant!

I thought I’d start my first official blog post off with something every decorator needs…..fondant!  

Sure, you can buy several different brands of pre made, pre colored fondant and save yourself the headache, and extra step of making it yourself…..BUT it’s a bit more expensive to buy, and there is a huge difference in taste (that’s just my opinion though)! I’m also a firm believer that homemade is from the heart ❤️.   

The following recipe will give your fondant the taste of buttercream.  

Here is what you need!

  • Vegetable shortening ( yuck, I know….but it’s necessary for real)
  • 8 cups MINI marshmallows (MINI…trust me on this!)
  • 2 1/2 tsp CLEAR vanilla extract
  • 2 1/2 tsp CLEAR butter extract
  • 1/2 tsp fine salt
  • 3TBS water
  • 2 lbs sifted powdered sugar
  • 2TBS powdered dream whip (IMPORTANT! We are going for taste here!)

*Ofcourse you don’t HAVE to use clear extract…..if you want lil brown colored lumps in yer fondant.

Here we go!

Start off by greasing a large, microwave safe bowl, generously with vegetable shortening……SERIOUSLY…..do not forget this step!  Add your 8 cups of mini marshmallows, water, butter& vanilla extract.  

In a separate large bowl, combine 2lbs powdered sugar with salt and dream whip (store brand works just as well). Mix errr up! Then, create  a well in the middle of your mixture..

  
Place marshmallow mixture in the microwave for 1 minute!

 Meanwhile generously grease a rubber spatula, as well as your countertop for kneading…..AGAIN,,,,,,,, do not skip this step…..I’m just trying to help you out of a sticky mess here people.  

Times up! Give the marshmallow mixture a good stir.  If not completely melted, place back in the micro for 30 sec intervals until melted smooth. (Once melted you can add gel coloring if you need colored fondant, or leave it white and do it later…I’ve added a lil pink to mine) 

  
Pour melted marshmallows into your powdered sugar mixture.  Mix until your little arms can mix no more, and then turn out on to your well GREASED 😉 countertop.   Oh ya…… Before you start kneading, ya might wanna grease up those hands…..JS……. 

Here’s what it looks like……

  
A giant sticky mess!

 Knead away people…….this could take anywhere from 5 min to 10. Just depends how temperamental your ingredients are feeling that day.  If it starts to stick to your counter top, just add a little more of the powdered sugar mix underneath it.  I always have some still sticking around in my bowl.  

Here’s the thing……when I taught myself how to do this stuff, I don’t recall reading any tutorials that warned me about the weather.  The threat is real! 

Let’s just say you’re blindly making your fondant when it’s 85 degrees outside.  Don’t care if your air is on or not……chances are you’re gonna have a seriously gooey mess on your hands, literally!  Don’t panic……..or cry…..just slowly incorporate a lil more powdered sugar into your fondant until it reaches a “pliable” almost play-doh like consistency.  

On the other hand…..if it’s the dead of winter (yes…even if your heat is workin over time) your fondant is gonna be purdy upset and get all dry and cracked on ya.  It might even crumble into a million tiny particles…..Try not to have a temper tantrum here 😏, just give your fondant a tiny mist from a water spray bottle…..and I mean tiny! (Too much water will break down your fondant and turn it into a puddle).  

Then just keep on kneading til your fondant is smooth and happy! 

  
That’s it! Once you’ve done it a few times, you’ll be a master!  

Last step: wrap that baby up tight with Saran Wrap so it can set up for a few hours, or overnight.  If it’s cold outside, just give a light coating of vegetable shortening so it doesn’t dry out.

  
If you try and use it too soon, it’ll just be all warm, and soft and gooey on ya.  Nobody wants their cake covered in weepy fondant.  So give yourself the extra time to make it a day or so beforehand! 

OH YA…..ONE MORE THING…….OR TWO!

  1. Once you’re ready to use it, just break off what ya need, color it if you like, re knead and roll out! (If it’s being stubborn and too hard to knead, you can pop it in the micro for a few seconds to soften, but BE CAREFUL you don’t melt it!).  AND finally…..
  2. (This pertains to the weather……again). Before re kneading your fondant, you’ll need to prepare your countertop.  Generally, you will want to use vegetable shortening, so’s it doesn’t stick.  HowevA…. depending on the weather that can make it worse sometimes.  I have been told repeatedly that dusting the counter with powdered sugar works just as well…… To this I disagree! Adding more powdered sugar has only ever made my fondant dry out.  So I cannot recommend it.  I do recommend always, always lightly dusting your counter with corn starch! No matter what the weather, corn starch has never, ever let me down!  Not only does it keep your fondant from sticking to the surface, but it always seems to keep it nice and pliable no matter what weather you are dealing with!  JUST THOUGHT YOU’D WANNA KNOW 😊

 I hope this lil tutorial was helpful! If you have any questions feel free to ask!