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December 20, 2022 4 min read

 

Cakes can be absolute works of art with their exquisite designs. If you want to decorate a cake and make sure it turns out great, there's a big probability that you'll be using fondant. To learn more about what fondant is, continue reading.

 

What Is Fondant Icing?

 A three tiered cake with pink, cerise and white fondant icing with candles on the top

Credit: Envato Elements/ RuthBlack

 

Fondant icing is a popular type of icing that can be used to physically mold, roll, shape, and embellish cakes, pastries, and other sweet delights. Because fondant can be colored and given other textures, all kinds of colorful, magnificent desserts with various forms and aesthetics can be created.

 

Types of Fondant Icing

 

Fondant-covered cakes are popular among bakers and home cooks alike. This popular type of icing can be of various types:

 

1)  Poured Fondant

 Some small vanilla squares with green fondant being poured over them

Credit: Wilton

 

Poured fondant is a creamy, liquid frosting that is used as a filling or icing for pastries like éclairs and Napoleons. Its primary ingredients are corn syrup, sugar, and water. Some recipes also call for glucose or corn syrup. To give baked items a flawless finish, this type of icing is poured over pastries. After pouring, it dries to a smooth, semi-hard surface.

 

2)  Rolled Fondant

 Pink stamped fondant being added to some shortbread biscuits

Credit: Envato Elements/ David_Tanke

 

The main ingredients of rolled fondant include powdered sugar, corn syrup, water, glycerin, shortening, and gelatin. When all the ingredients are mixed together, it forms a type of sweet dough which is then rolled out and used to cover cakes and other pastries. Rolled fondant is popular in cake decorating due to its ease of use. Other than being used to coat cakes with an even layer, it is also used to make flowers and other edible decorations.

 

3)  Other Types of Fondant

 Brightly colored fondant icing in the colors of the rainbow

Credit: Bigger Bolder Baking

 

In addition to the above-mentioned types of fondant, there are also other types of fondant such as sculpting fondant, which is a stiffer type of fondant that is used to create large sculptures. Furthermore, there is gum paste fondant, which resembles rolled fondant but is actually a kind of sugar paste rather than a dough and hardens considerably more quickly after drying out. And lastly, there is marshmallow fondant which is made by using melted marshmallows, sugar, water, and shortening. This form of fondant is often easier to handle and more flexible, despite the possibility that the process will make your hands slightly sticky.

 

Is Fondant Edible?

 A baby picking at the fruit and fondant on his birthday cake

Credit: Envato Elements/ Anikona

 

Yes, fondant is edible. Fondant is produced specifically to be used on cakes and other sweets, and all of the ingredients needed to make it are edible. Despite being edible, many people avoid fondant due to its high sugar content, food coloring, and stiff texture.

When it comes to the sugar content, every 100 grams of fondant has 88.9 grams of sugar. Considering that the daily recommended intake of added sugar is 24 grams for the average woman and 36 grams for men, 88.9 grams is a lot for anyone.

When it comes to food coloring, frequent and excessive consumption can be detrimental to our health. Additionally, food coloring has chemical additives that can cause allergies and hyperactivity in children.

When it comes to texture, fondant has a consistency that is similar to gum, which makes it unpleasant to chew. Many people are turned off by the texture and the stiffness of the fondant.

 

The Pros of Using Fondant Icing

 

There is a reason why fondant is so popular in cake shows like Cake Boss. Here are some benefits of using this kind of icing:

 

1)  Easy to Work With

 A lady using purple and black fondant icing to ice her double tiered cake

Credit: Envato Elements/ AntonioGravante

 

The majority of bakers prefer fondant as their icing of choice in birthday and wedding cakes because of how easy it is to use for cake decoration. With the use of fondant, you can create almost anything you can imagine, including animals, flowers, and even ribbons. Fondant can be used to transform a basic cake into a stunning confection that will be the center of attention at any event.

 

2)  Stable and Easy to Transport

 Two white fondant iced cakes with a blue and purple flower and matching ribbons

Credit: Envato Elements/ ECoelfen

 

While fondant cakes are still delicate, they can withstand more stress than most frostings. Since this icing type is more stable, cakes made out of fondant are easier to transport. Unlike buttercream, which will be harmed if you brush against it, fondant cakes won't.

 

The Cons of Using Fondant Icing

 

While using fondant on your next chocolate cake has benefits, there are also drawbacks:

 

1)  Flavor and Texture

 A lady sitting on the floor and eating some cake with fondant icing

Credit: Envato Elements/ catsofnishava

 

Fondant tastes terrible. Many times, though not always, fondant is too sweet, which could overwhelm the cake. In addition, many people can find the gum-like texture unappealing.

 

2)  Sensitive to Temperature

 A person rolling out fondant icing with a rolling pin

Credit: Baking Kneads, LLC

 

Fondant becomes sticky in humid environments, soft in hot environments and stiff in cold environments. If you're planning to make a fondant cake for an outside event, this can be a deal-breaker.

 

How to Make Your Own Fondant

 A vanilla cake with white fondant being added to the top

Credit: Bigger Bolder Baking

 

Making fondant is simple, but there are a lot of different types of fondant, so you can experiment with the recipe to see what suits your needs the best.

 

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp Glycerin
  • 2 Tbsp Shortening
  • 8 Cups Confectioners' Sugar
  • 2 Tbsp Gelatin
  • 1/2 Cup Corn Syrup

 

Directions:

1. In a double boiler, combine gelatin and cold water and heat until the gelatin is dissolved.

2. Mix in the corn syrup and the shortening.

3. Wait until the mixture is lukewarm.

4. Knead until it has formed a dough.

5. In a big bowl, add the confectioners' sugar. Create a hole in the center, then add the warm gelatin mixture by stirring with a wooden spoon.

6. Knead the fondant with your hands until it is spreadable, smooth, and sticky.

7. Use right away or store in an airtight container.

 

Summary

As a cake baker or decorator, you will undoubtedly come across fondant. This type of icing is a great choice if you want your cakes to look flawless and polished. If you're looking for cake decorating tools to help you decorate cakes, visit Pepe Nero.



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