Rollin’ with Fondant

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Fondant Flower on Ganache

Fondant comes in variety. There’s what you call Poured Fondant and there’s also Rolled Fondant. The two is similar but as their names say, one is poured, meaning, it is liquid in form and the other is “rolled” meaning you can work on it as a dough or simply clay. Rolled fondant comes in different flavors but the most basic and commonly used is Vanilla/White as labeled in most pre-made fondant tubs. Satin Ice, in my country, is the most commonly bought. Some are now made with Buttercream flavor in which I have no idea what it tastes like (I expect better than the original since it says “buttercream”). All kinds are used in pastries and confectionery. In modern times, using rolled fondant in cakes has become and continues to be in trend in the food industry. Most wedding cakes and some birthday cakes nowadays are based on cakes decorated with fondant because the use of this to cakes is very eye-catching.

In my own description, fondant is as sweet as any icing that is workable as clay that you may color and decorate over cakes and cupcakes. Anyone can make his own rolled fondant at home! That’s the beast part when you don’t get to spend as much as $10-$11. You’ll only spend maybe at least $5. Personally, I’m not a fan of fondant’s taste as it is, everyone knows, too sweet. I make one so I know how much sugar’s packed into it and all I can say, not for a diabetic. But just like everyone else whose passion is to be creative, I use it too. Anyway it’s a choice to eat the cake without it, I understand (Hehe).

Just this week, I tried to make my own homemade rolled fondant! And yey! I’m kind of proud of myself. I’ve always wanted to try making my own so that I could start crafting on my cupcakes and later on, who knows, cakes, layered cakes! Okay. At first I was actually thinking of buying a pre-made rolled fondant such as Satin Ice because it what was most people would suggest – so that one may know first the real texture, color, consistency or whatever it is that fondant is. True, true but you see, I live in a country that’s kind of limited when it comes to imported products. Willing that I am to buy Satin Ice, unfortunately there wasn’t any available at the time I called and honestly, it’s kind of expensive for 2 lbs. only. They didn’t know when their next supply was coming and being the explorer that I am, I simply couldn’t wait and so I just did my own. I have read much about rolled fondant on the internet and watched videos and tutorials that would give me ideas on how it was done. Most of the recipes from the videos on my research basically require and produces the same stuff. So I gathered up confidence in trying. At first, okay I was doing fine, following instructions and not over-thinking as that could kill what I was doing. I became hesitant at times especially during the kneading part as I thought my fondant was really becoming stiff. Oh, and get ready to workout and sweat during kneading. But whatever the hesitations I had or problems that may arise to anyone doing their own fondant, there’s a solution, trust me. So just keep doing what you’re doing and rollin’ what you’re rollin’. And if you find yourself sweating as you come to knead your fondant, it’s okay. It would happen if you don’t have a stand mixer (and it’s okay). But kneading? It lasts!

As I am very happy to have done my first homemade fondant, I would like to share with you guys how I made it. I got the recipe below from Lisa Mansour of about.com and for those who know her, I know, I know, she looks so stiff and all like – look who’s been left by his husband, I’m sorry (hehe) but let’s not judge her because her recipe goes well. I just hope that behind the cameras, she’d smile more often. I have also researched on different recipes and basically everything is made the same way.

Here’s everything you need:

  • Gelatin – 1 Tablespoon and 2 teaspoons
  • Cold Water – 1/4 cup
  • Glucose – 1/2 cup or
  • Corn Syrup – 1/2 cup (If using corn syrup instead of glucose, do reduce your cold water to 3 Tablespoons only)
  • Vegetable Shortening – 2 Tablespoons
  • Glycerine – 1 Tablespoon
  • Powdered Sugar – 8 cups (Sifted)
  • Choice of Vanilla Extract, Almond Extract or any – 1 teaspoon

Notes:

*It is important to sift your powdered sugar as sometimes, there are small bits which are hard as tiny stones. Nobody wants a rocky-textured fondant.

*The recipe may require 8 cups of powdered sugar, but that is the approximate. You will find that at least 6 cups is enough. BTW, 8 cups is equivalent to 2 lbs. or 907 grams (yours truly exerted time to measure) for those who prefer to measure it using a weighing scale as measuring cups could sometimes be untrustworthy. Could somebody agree, please? And so for 6 cups, it’s 680 grams.

*Natural Vanilla Extract could produce an off-white color to your fondant but that is really not much of an issue if you plan on coloring your fondant after. Use Pure and Clear Vanilla Extract if not coloring fondant.

*Almond Extract, usually clear, has a very very strong flavor so do not over-measure. Vanilla is my preference.

In a stainless steel bowl, pour your cold water and sprinkle your gelatin over. Allow to stand for a few minutes until it thickens. Set aside. Now in a double boiler, with the water barely simmering, melt your thickened gelatin completely until it is clear and dissolved. Take your time. Add glucose and mix well. Add the shortening and stir slowly. Just before the shortening is completely melted, remove the bowl from the double boiler. Add your glycerin and clear vanilla extract (or almond). Stir well and allow to cool until it is lukewarm.

In a bowl, pour half of your powdered sugar and form a well in the center. Pour in the lukewarm mixture and start stirring the mixture with a wooden spoon (I used a rubber spoonatula and it works too) until most of the sugar comes together and forms into a somewhat sticky dough. This takes time. Set this aside for a while. Now in a clean table or surface, pour over the remaining powdered sugar. put the dough on top of this pack of sugar and knead well until it comes together forming a smooth, pliable (like clay) dough that’s not sticky or tacky. You don’t necessarily need most of the remaining sugar as it can make your fondant too stiff. Kneading manually takes time and effort but it will all be worth it. If in any case, your fondant seems too stiff, add a drop of water at a time and knead until it’s the right consistency. If it’s too soft, just add maybe a handful of powdered sugar or less at a time, until, well, it’s the right consistency. Now, you may wonder how smooth and pliable feels for a fondant, just don’t over-think. What I do is just knead the fondant thoroughly until it’s not sticky to my palms, get a pinch from the dough and roll it with my hands forming a small ball and check if I can work on it like a clay without it sticking to my hands. If it does, voila, a fondant.

Cover your fondant dough with clingwrap and allow to sit in a bowl covered again with clingwrap. Fondant lasts for a month or two stored in room temperature. A few people suggest to keep rolled fondant refrigerated but you see, there’s too much moisture going inside the fridge and might affect the consistency of the fondant when ready to use.

So, hey, was I able to help? Let’s all do our own fondant whenever we need to. Who cares for a little workout? As for me, I am ready to use mine for decorations this weekend, when I can sadly, only spend time for baking. Oh well! Lustre Dust, Sparkle Dust and AmeriColor, I already can’t wait to use! Photos to follow soon. Ciao Bella!

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