Sunday, February 1, 2009

Oh, this is hard

Oh, the wonders of cake decorating. If you do it right, the payoffs are huge.This is a cake I decorated for my friend Racheli's birthday. This was my first experiment with using fondant for decoration, a thick, creamy white frosting like substance that is popular among cake decorators because of its professional looking finish.
Throughout this process I learned many things about fondant.
1. It doesn't taste very good.
2. It can be quite difficult to work with (and dye).
3. If you pronounce the word a little funny, your friends will make fun of your for weeks.
Anyway, back to the great cake decorating adventure that is this post. And yes, I know there isn't really any baking involved here, (there was at the time - no store bought or mix cakes here) but bear with me.
Well anyway, I decided to purchase Wilton pre-made fondant at my local craft store, and dye it the colors of my choosing. The main covering is dyed a light pink, and, if you couldn't tell from this picture, the cake is covered in what is meant to be a string of pearls (see the clasp at the top?).
Well, this process began by dying most of the fondant pink, which took quite a while, resulted in sore arms, and dyed my hands red for a couple days. Beauty is pain people. Cake beauty that is.
So once the fondant was dyed, I rolled it out into what I determined to be a large enough size to cover the cake, and gently laid the fondant over the cake.
Problem number one: despite my eyeball calculations, the fondant came until just a centimeter off the cake board one on side, leaving a sliver of naked cake. Uhoh.
Now, if you look closely you can see the nice ring of fondant balls around the base of the cake. Yup, not in the original plan. Improvisation is the mark of all good cake decorators, no? Thats my motto anyway.
After that the remaining dying and decorating went relatively well, though I heartily recommend if you're not strapped for cash to buy black fondant pre-dyed if you need it. That food coloring definitely took its toll on my poor hands.
Well, this was experiment number one with the wonder that is fondant, and thank goodness the picture isn't good enough to show the lumps and bumps and imperfections.
Plus it's gone and eaten now - no evidence!

Tip of the Day: When working with fondant, make sure your hands, countertop and rolling pin are liberally covered with powdered sugar - you don't want your decorations to stick!


  1. Looks good! The pink is a very true pink.

  2. You have more patience than I do... I have worked with fondant a couple of times and it hurts my arms & hands, too.

    And, yes. Improvisation is definitely a skill that good cake decorators need. :-)

  3. first time working with fondant?!?!

    have we forgotten the famous cow cake?!