Lemonade by the Gallon


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Conquering Fondant – Phase I

[Sept. 6 – This post has been edited to add a list of interesting fondant related links below.

Jan. 29, ’08 – Edited to add some instructions.

March 21, ’08 – Added a link at the end to a recipe for marshmallow fondant.

August 16, ’10 – Yikes!!  The How to Make Fondant link no longer leads to the recipe I used!  I’ve added a link to a similar recipe at the end of the post.  ]

My cousin’s baby shower has been scheduled for next week so the pressure is on to get that flippin’ fondant issue resolved. I have finally found a way to make it that actually works, no thanks to my BH&G cookbook! I’ve made way more hard candy than I ever meant to. (I am heartened to know that I can make hard candy. Now to do it sometime on purpose.) As soon as I finish this blog post, I’m going into the kitchen and throwing the rest of it away before anyone gets a chance to gnaw on more of it. For dinner, we are each having our own family size package of frozen broccoli – cooked, of course – and then we will spend several hours brushing our teeth.

After my most recent bout with failure, I went with the fondant recipe I posted the link for yesterday. Below are the results of my efforts. On the left we have the How to Make Fondant recipe. On the right we have the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook recipe.

Success At Last

Which looks more like the picture in the BH&G cookbook, the blob in my hand or the vanilla tinted venetian glass calla lily blossom on the right? [switched pics, no calla lily blossom.]

After spending an hour waiting for the stuff on the right to be cool enough to stir and then knead, I discovered that it had almost completely hardened. After wrestling with it to break a piece off to taste, I wrestled the rest out of the baking dish. So much for greasing! That stuff formed a suction in some places. I had to run the bottom of the dish under hot water to soften it enough to peel it out of the dish and then I had to run hot water on the stuck parts inside the dish. The mangled mess on the plate is what remains. If you need teeth removed, let me know in the next 15 minutes or so and you can come over and chomp down on some of this.

The “How to” recipe was so simple that I’m kicking myself for not searching for it sooner. It has basically the same ingredients as the BH&G recipe, except the “How to” recipe uses butter (I used Soy Garden) and powdered sugar. The BH&G recipe uses granulated sugar and no butter. The “How to” recipe took me about 5 minutes! The best part is that it doesn’t require constant monitoring. What a load off! I don’t know about anyone else, but I don’t have all kinds of time and resources to make and remake the same recipe only to have it come out ruined every single time. I would love to learn to make other things using boiled corn syrup and sugar but I just can’t see the point in doing fondant the hard way when this easy recipe is available. [ETA on 1-29-07: The How To recipe is a bit … doughy gloppy gooey. It doesn’t hold its shape well as is, so if you attempt this, add a starch to it (I used corn starch. Tapioca starch will also work, as will a mix of starches.) so that it will be stiff enough to stay in place. It doesn’t taste nearly enough like candy corn that way, but then it’s not really meant to be eaten by the finger full. In the future when I make this, I will not use it if a thing has to be white. It’s more of a cream than a white.]

All of that said, I haven’t decorated the cake yet so I am not absolutely sure this fondant is a success, and I won’t know until next week. I still need to bake the cake, get frosting for the layers and the baby face, and color the fondant a flesh tone before I can even get started on the deco. I am so not a cake maker! If this doesn’t turn out … well, we just won’t think about that. I guess it’s a little late to sign up for a Wilton’s cake decorating class, isn’t it.

Links:

How Much Is That Doggy In The Window – This cake is adorable! Su-Yin, “the Girl who Loves to Cook”, has made many beautiful things. Yesterday’s entry was about fondant!

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3-21-08

Marshmallow Fondant???

A hat tip to Melissa, who  shared a link to a recipe for marshmallow fondant.   The recipe looks simple and the instructions seem easy to follow.   It’s definitely worth a try, though I hope I don’t throw in some Rice Krispies out of habit!

Thanks, Melissa!

Update: August 16, 2010

I have just learned that the How to Make Fondant link is now a trip to a page of a list of links.  Here’s a recipe that may work.  It looks similar.  I could kick myself for not keeping track of that recipe!!!

Someday I’ll update this post with actual recipes that aren’t link dependant, but today is not that day!

Cheers!

Esther

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