Thursday, June 3, 2010

Make Your Own Fondant

Fondant is an extremely versatile medium for cake decorating.  I have used it for covering cakes(of course), making cut out decorations, modeling figures, making bows, making flowers.....this stuff can be used for almost anything.  When people ask me what it is like I tell them that it is kind of like a play dough made out of sugar.  As an art major, my emphasis was in clay so this stuff is right up my ally.

I've used a few different brands of pre-made fondant.  I was inspired to make my own because it costs so much less than ready made.   After trying a few recipes I found one that I really like.  In fact I prefer working with this homemade fondant over the pre-made stuff.  This recipe came from Michele Foster.

I feel that I must warn you from the get go that I have never made this recipe without my wonderful stand mixer.  If you don't have one be prepared to use a great deal of elbow grease to get this done.  On the up side, if you make this many times by hand you might get arms like Rambo.  It would be like combining weight training and baking.  What a deal!

Here we go.

One thing that drew me to this recipe is the list of ingredients.  I had heard of them and had most of them already in my kitchen.  I could purchase every ingredient from my small town store.

Measure the milk into a small bowl.  Mine is a large, Pyrex measuring cup.  Make sure it will work as your double broiler later.(keep reading, I'll show you)  Sprinkle the gelatin over the milk and let it set to absorb the milk.

Once the gelatin is firm you are ready for the double boiler.  I should take about 3 minutes.

This is my version of a double boiler.  Very fancy, huh?  All you need is a sauce pan with some water.  Place the bowl of gelatin over it and boil the water.  The bowl should be just above the water and not touching it.

Heat the gelatin mixture in your double boiler until it melts.

When it looks like this your ready for more ingredients...

like butter.  Put the whole chunk in.

Pour in the corn syrup.

Pour in the glycerin.  Glycerin is the one ingredient that you won't find in the food section at the store.  I found mine in the pharmacy section near the hand creams.  I assure you, it is edible.  It keeps your fondant from drying out too soon.

Also add the vanilla.  If you are feeling adventurous you could use other flavorings as well.  It really just depends on what tastes you like.  I've never used anything but vanilla.

Keep stirring and heating until it is all combined and homogeneous.

Remove the bowl from the double boiler and let cool.  This part takes a lot of patience.  I always want to rush it.  You can stir it periodically during cooling to minimize the skin that forms on top.  Don't worry if there are floaties from the bubbles.  We're about to take care of that.

Pour an entire 2lb. bag of powdered sugar into the mixer bowl.  The original recipe calls for sifting the powdered sugar.  I used to do that and then got lazy and didn't....couldn't tell a difference.  Place a strainer over the bowl and pour the cooled gelatin mixture in.

The strainer will catch all those undesirable floaties.

Here's where you'll start those Rambo arms if you don't have a mixer.  I put on the dough hook and start the machine on speed 2. 

As the powdered sugar gets mixed in, slowly add more until the mixture begins to hold it's shape on the dough hook when you stop the machine.  If you are mixing by hand, stir in as much of the powdered sugar as you can.  Then put the fondant out on a clean surface and knead in the rest.

Spray a large piece of plastic wrap with non-stick spray.  Pour/dump all the fondant mixture out on the plastic.  It takes some work to get it out of the bowl.  This is SUPER sticky stuff!

Wrap the fondant with the plastic and place in a zipper seal bag.  Let the fondant rest 24 hours(or at least overnight).  When you are ready to use it, just knead it until it is smooth and pliable.  You can also knead in the color of your choice.  If the fondant is too sticky just knead in some powdered sugar.  If it is to stiff, knead in some shortening.

Ingredients
1/2 cup milk
3 packs gelatin (6 tsp.)
1 cup corn syrup
3 Tbs. unsalted butter
3 Tbs. glycerin
2 tsp. vanilla
dash salt
3-4 lb. powdered sugar.

My mixer is a 6qt. beast.  If you have a smaller stand mixer, I suggest only making half of this recipe.  Your mixer will thank you.

Happy caking!



--Frostine

29 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing! I've only tried making marshmallow fondant, so it's nice to see another recipe!

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  2. what do you use for coloring the fondant?

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  3. I use gel colors to color the fondant.

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  4. does it taste good? i have heard alot of this doenst taste great.
    also would you be willing to do a tutorial on using it

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  5. It tastes sweet and vanilla-y. You can flavor it with any extract of your choice. What many people don't like about it is the texture. The texture is much like salt water taffy, only not at sticky. My family(my husband in particular) doesn't like to "chew" the frosting on the cake. They want the light fluffy buttercream. It's all a matter of personal taste. I prefer to frost my cakes with buttercream and use the fondant for decorations. I have covered cakes with fondant when the design cannot be accomplished with buttercream. My husband just peals it off of his slice of cake and then everyone is happy. There are several posts on my site using fondant. Are you looking for a tutorial on a specific technique? I don't have a tutorial made yet for covering a cake with fondant. In time I hope to get one up for you.

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  6. I am having the worst trouble kneading it to the point of being able to use it. I started to add a little color but it just isn't working for me... Any suggestions. I was super excited yesterday when I finished it and was hoping to be able to top some cupcakes with it...

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  7. I'm so sorry you are having trouble. I'll try to help. Is it too dry or too sticky? Coloring does take time and muscle. When I color it I don't put it down on the counter. I roll it in my hands to make a long snake. Then I double it over itself and roll into a snake again. Over and over until the color is mixed. You can rub some shortening into your hands to prevent it from sticking. Re-apply when it starts to stick again. I hope that is helpful. Feel free to email me as well.

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  8. Very sticky.. Is it best to add more powder sugar? The flavor really is great. (Thanks for the reply.)

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  9. Yes, knead in more powdered sugar. Hope you are able to get it working in time for your project.

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  10. Hi, I looooove your blog! Thank you for sharing! How much fondant does this recipe yield? What size cake would it cover? Please and thank you in advance

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  11. This recipe makes approximately 4 lbs. of fondant. How much it covers depends on how you roll it out. According to one chart I have, that should be plenty to cover a two layer 11" round with extra for decorations. Hope that helps!

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  12. It did and thank you so much for responding!

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  13. hey can you teach how to make corn syrup please...

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  14. I don't make the corn syrup. I buy it at the store. What country do you live in? I'll try to find out what substitute can be found in your area.

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  15. I live in South Africa and we do not get corn syrup here. I read somewhere that glucose liquid works a substitute... haven't tried it yet so can't say if it works. Also want to try make my own fondant as the premade fondant really doesn't taste nice - buttercream is way more yummy!. I made marshmallow fondant but did something wrong as there were lumps of icing sugar in mine :-( I am a beginner cake decorated so am still at that trial and error stage ;-)

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    1. I too have been told that glucose liquid is a good substitute for corn syrup. If you try it out, please post your results. I'm sure there are other readers who are wondering the same thing.

      To be truthful, I'm not a huge fan of fondant for eating either. One thing that is nice about making your own is that you can flavor it any way you like with extracts. My preference it to use the fondant for decorations on the cake when you can't produce the same effect with buttercream. You're right, buttercream is way more yummy!

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    2. Hi Frostine, I know this is almost a year later but just thought I would let you know that I have made fondant with glucose syrup/liquid and it works perfectly fine.

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  16. If you want to mix coloring/flavour (i prefer rasberry kuralome)just stick that sucker in the microwave. heat is ur friend

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  17. Hi there, I just made my first batch of this and I don't need it for 5 days! How do I store it so it doesn't spoil? Can it go in the fridge?

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    1. Wrap the fondant in the greased plastic wrap and then seal in a ziploc type bag. It will keep just fine at room temperature for well over 5 days. Just keep it out of any direct sunlight.

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  18. will a hand mixer work for this instead of the stand alone?

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    1. The hand mixer might get you started, but this stuff gets very stiff to mix. I wouldn't want you to burn out your mixer. Be ready with a sturdy wooden spoon to finish after your mixer can't take it.

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  19. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  20. Do you have to use the glycerin? We are having a hard time finding any - even at the pharmacy.

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    1. The glycerin will keep it from drying too quickly and help with elasticity. Keep looking for it-it's worth it.

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  21. Hi I was wondering what climate you live in where you make this? Its dry where I live lately and my fondant has been coming out really crumbly to the point where when you knead it it just falls apart (using Michelle Fosters recipe taken from another source). Have you ever had that issue when you make it? If so did you experience it when it was dry there?

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    1. I actually live in a climate that is typically humid. If you are having trouble with it being too crumbly, don't add in as much powdered sugar. I always add the last bit of the powdered sugar based on how the fondant looks. Sometimes you need more/less.

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  22. Hello, I cudnt find corn syrup. Can I use substitute for that? I know a recipe that includes sugar water lime extract . Will it work? Also please tell me what do I do if fondant cracks especially the characters I make with it. They often crack after I store them.

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