Thursday, April 22, 2010

Fondant Mystery..

I've been pondering the whole idea of fondant for quite some time. You can buy it pre-made or you can make your own. When "V" and I got married our cake was made of fondant. It tends to be an acquired taste and through many cake tastings we found that most are not all that edible -- it definitely makes a cake look pretty but trying to find a good tasting fondant can be difficult. We lucked out and the gal that made our cake always made her fondant from scratch and it was delightful. I'm not a big sweet person so it was nice to have something that tasted nice but not overpowering on the sweet side.

As baby V approaches her 2nd birthday - yes can you believe it - she'll be two... I ponder what cake I'll make this year. Last year I went over board and made two, which ended up being, huge cakes. This is the caterpillar cake I made for her last year.

Now I'm thinking - how can I top this. Well --- I'm thinking I'll go with the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse this year. She's all into Mickey and his gang and it's a weekend ritual to wake up and sing the Hot Dog song every morning. Besides what kid at her age wouldn't love to say "Meeska Mooska Mickey Mouse" and have the clubhouse magically appear and best thing of all - have it be edible. Here's the cake I plan on attempting to make.

Keep in mind that I did not make this cake and I can not take credit for the photo above. This cake was made by Norma S. from Indiana and she was so kind to post her cake with tips and hints at the Coolest Birthday Cakes Website. However, it's given me a good guide on how to make baby V's cake this year. However, as you can see - there's fondant - lots of fondant on this cake. I've never made fondant and have never worked with fondant. But to make this cake and make it turn out well I figured I'd have to dabble in getting some experience with this. I had pondered using the pre-made fondant but as I've said before it may not taste the best. So after some research and talking to some fellow friends, I decided to make some fondant on my own. Miraculously -- it was not hard at all. It had to be about the easiest thing I've ever made. Take some Marshmallows, water and powdered sugar and you're good to go. Now I added some almond extract into my water to give it some flavor and to see how it would work and it appeared to have worked wonderfully. Here was my end product for my first small batch.

Now that I've made it - it's sitting in my fridge for use. I will be rolling it out and playing with it soon to see what I can do with it but so far I've got a good product and who would have thought this would have been so easy to make.

Marshmallow Fondant
1 Cup Mini Marshmallows
1 Tablespoon Water
1 1/2 Cup Powdered Sugar

Pack marshmallows into measuring cup until packed tightly and getting 1 cup. Push them down as you measure them out. Place into a microwave safe bowl. Add your water and microwave until they puff up - about 30 seconds or so. (If you want them flavored - add some extract into your tablespoon and then fill the rest up with water.) While marshmallows are in microwave - sift 1 1/2 cups of powdered sugar into a bowl. Now, once the marshmallows have puffed up, remove from microwave and stir. It should be a soupy consistency. If you want your batch to be all one color - add your coloring now. (I used the Wilton Paste Food Colors and it worked well.) Next add your marshmallows into your sugar and stir until well combined. It turns into a lumpy dough mess and won't combine into a ball at this point - that's okay. At this point - grease your hands up with some Crisco shortening and dump your bowl of fondant onto a clean surface to start kneading. You'll knead this mixture like you would bread dough. Knead it until you get a nice dough ball and it has nicely come together. Once you have your fondant ball - wrap up in saran wrap, place in a Ziploc bag and refrigerate. From what I've read - keeping your fondant refrigerated will last for several weeks. So this is something that you can make ahead of time as time permits.

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