Monday, May 18, 2009

fondant 101

Fondant is quite the controversial cake covering. Some people love it, some hate it, most like to decorate with it, because it makes for a smooth, clean, pretty cake. I don't care for it myself. I'm a very textural person when it comes to food and moist crumbly cake doesn't mix well with chewy for my palate. Wilton fondant is probably the most disgusting from what I've experienced. It's extremely easy to use, but not good to eat. I suppose that's a fair trade off for when you're first learning. Then there are the type you can buy. Satin Ice (especially white chocolate, and I don't like white chocolate) is pretty tasty. These come at a price though. They are usually about 10 bucks for 2 lbs of fondant. Not for your casual cake decorator. There is another, cheaper route to go though. You can make your own, and it's not nearly as hard as you may fear. I just made my first batch and it came out wonderfully. There of course are different types, but marshmallow fondant (or MMF) is fairly easy to make, and tastes much better than Wilton's store kind. This recipe is from and it's called Rhonda's ultimate MMF recipe.

15 oz. mini marshmallows (regular bags have 10 oz, so be aware)
2 T water
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp lemon juice (fresh or bottled)
2 tsp light corn syrup (helps w/ pliability)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp lemon extract
2 lbs (approx 7 C) confectioner's sugar, sifted
1/2 C Crisco or vegetable shortening

Grease microwave proof bowl w/ Crisco. Also grease wooden or heat proof spoon. Pour marshmallows and water into bowl. Microwave for approximately 2 minutes stopping and stirring at 40 second intervals. Mixture should be soupy.

Take out of microwave and immediately add corn syrup, lemon juice, salt and extracts. Stir well. Sift confectioner's sugar into mixture, one cup at a time. After approximately 5 cups, grease your hands well with Crisco and knead the mixture in the bowl it will be very sticky at this point. Add the sixth cup and continue to knead. Now grease your work surface well and turn mixture out of bowl onto counter. Sift remaining sugar, regrease hands, and knead well. If mixture seems soft, add one additional cup of powdered sugar.

Shape into a mound and put a coating of crisco on outside. Double wrap in cling wrap and insert into ziplock bag. Press air out of bag and seal. Allow to rest overnight, but, can be used after sitting for a few hours.

Now, whenever you're ready to cover your cake, you just take it out of the bag and knead it for a while. Once it's soft and pliable, just roll it out to the correct size for your cake and cover :)


  1. Does anybody ever cover a cake in a buttercream icing and then add fondant on top for the look? Is that even possible?

  2. all the time! Since some people don't like fondant, the buttercream acts not only as a glue to adhere the fondant to the cake, but if the fondant is peeled off, there is still something sweet left covering the cake. A lot of bakers use a meringue based icing instead because its lighter (and in my opinion, tastes much better!) I think the british even put marzipan on top of the buttercream, and then put the fondant on top of that!