Sunday, July 4, 2010

Fun with Fondant

We threw a "Welcome Matt" party for my brother-in-law who has recently moved in with us. Since he's new to town, we thought it would be fun to introduce him to some new people, and it was also a good excuse just to have friends over.

Picking the 3rd of July as the date apparently wasn't too smart, as most people had out-of-town plans. But we did have a good crowd of about fifteen, which actually worked out well, since it ended up raining all day and our plans of eating outside were ruined.

On my Facebook event for the party I used this image of a welcome mat. I thought it would be fun to have a cake that looked like a welcome mat at the party, but wasn't really into spending 40-50 bucks at a bakery to have one made.

I decided I'd just make the cake, and popped into a small cake/cookie decorating store about a mile from our house. I told the woman my idea and she gave me some advice. The first decision was to decide between buttercream or fondant icing. I've never been a huge fan of fondant, but the woman had samples of the brand they carried (Fondarific) and the chocolate was almost yummy- it tasted like Tootsie Rolls!

I bought a tub of 2 lbs. This is what it looked like out of the packaging:

It was a little odd to look at the knuckle marks and know they weren't mine...Oh well. I ended up using a little less than one pound of the fondant. After nuking it in the microwave for 20-30 seconds, it was pretty easy to roll out.

I am not a baker by trade, and have yet to master a rolling pin. I think anyone with a little more practice than myself could've had a smooth surface quite easily.

For the actual cake I used a box of Betty Crocker mix. Someday I'll bake a cake from scratch, but not when I'm 37 weeks pregnant and have people arriving for a party in a few hours. Plus, cake mix cakes always taste yummy. I also frosted the cake with some delicous Betty Crocker frosting called something like "Super Duper Chocolate Fudge Goodness with Chocolate Chip Yumminess Sprinkled Throughout". This was to help the fondant stick.

Laying the fondant over the cake required the helpful hands of both my husband and his brother. It was nice to have the extra hands, and it laid fairly nicely.

After trimming the edges, I realized I should've frosted the sides of the cake as well. And that I have no idea what you're supposed to do at the corners. Oh well. :)

The woman at the cake store suggested I cut the letters out of the big piece of fondant, dye more fondant black, cut the letters out of the black fondant, and place them in the first holes. Then I could smooth it all out and keep it all level. That sounded like extra work and increased potential for error, so I nixed that idea. I did buy smaller letter cut-outs to make the letters fit horizontally across the cake, but those were actually too small and cost $16. So I decided to use the larger cookie cutters that I've had forever, and I'll return the tiny letters and get my money back. :)

The larger letters required me to form the word in an arc, and I think that made it look less like an actual welcome mat. Plus, I couldn't figure out a very simple way to do black horizontal lines across the cake.

In the end, I was glad I did what I did because then there was room for two dinosaurs! And my brother-in-law loves dinosaurs.

The cake a box cake...with a tootsie roll spread on top. :) I peeled off my piece's fondant and enjoyed the goodness beneath!

1 comment:

LadyConcierge said...

Love the dinosaurs!