Fondant And Air Bubbles. Help!

Decorating By SheilaF Updated 7 Jun 2015 , 12:14am by aezaidan

SheilaF Posted 25 May 2008 , 9:13pm
post #1 of 8

I don't know what I'm doing wrong, but EVERY time I cover a cake in fondant, I get these massive air bubbles. For the cake I did today, I left it in the fridge overnight with the BC frosting alone, then put the fondant on this morning Looked like it was going to stick well and not get air bubbles, but then as Im finishing it I noticed there was a HUGE air bubble on the top layer (this obviously became the back of the cake) .

What am I doing wrong to cause these? Do I need to lightly sprinkle water or something to make the fondant stick better when I'm applying it? I smooth the top then smooth from the top down to the bottom and make sure it's all flush before I finish it off, but 99% of the time, I end up with a huge bubble in there after it settles. It's making me hate to work with fondant. Any suggestions on how to prevent this from occuring? The only other thing that I think might add to this is using the fondant smoother, it seems to stick to the fondant sometimes as I'm running it around the cake and it might be pulling the fondant out a bit.

Thanks in advance..

7 replies
sistersorefeet Posted 25 May 2008 , 9:41pm
post #2 of 8

In the UK we work mostly with fondant, and it is important to knead it well, so it is soft and pliable. Use very little icing sugar to roll out on, the edges should be smooth when rolling out. If they are uneven or crazed, it needs to be kneaded some more. I usually buttercream the cake, then roll the fondant and cover immediately. I don't know if leaving the cake in the fridge overnight has had an effect. Anyway, lift the fondant with your rolling pin and drape the cake from one side to the other, ease your fondant onto the sides with your hands, making sure you have no folds. Remove excess paste. Use your smoother when you are sure the fondant is in place. If an air bubble develops, use a sterilised glass headed pin to pierce, gently ease the bubble out then smooth the tiny hole with your finger until it disappears. If your smoother is sticking to the icing, dust it lightly with icing (confectioners) sugar. and smooth the sides then the top. You can then "polish" your fondant with a small piece of excess paste, I rub it on the worktop where you have rolled your fondant, (the icing sugar you have rolled out on stops it sticking) and the smooth the cake in small circular motions, it gives a lovely smooth finish with a slight sheen.
Hope I've not gone on too much, and that it doesn't sound like I'm telling you what you already know! icon_redface.gificon_redface.gif Hope this helps,
Sister S x

loriemoms Posted 25 May 2008 , 10:12pm
post #3 of 8

I ice all my cakes ahead of time, and put them in the fridge to get them nice and cold (easier to do all that pushing around with fondant on a cold cake) What you need to do is take a clean paper towel, and wet it, and then blop it around on the cake to get the icing moist again. You also should use a VERy thin layer of icing, a thin crumb coat, and not real thick, or the fondant won't stick well.

I roll out my fondant on one of those blue mats, with some shortening on it, and then once its all rolled out, take my smoother and smooth it down nice and even on the mat first. This catches 90% of my air bubbles! (I use a pin to break them then smooth again) I then flip the fondant over the cake (shortening is facing out) and then dust it with some corn starch and start smoothing. I get very little air bubbles.

Also, you do need to knead the fondant and have it smooth as can be before rolling it out. this makes a huge difference in bubbles too.

SheilaF Posted 25 May 2008 , 11:25pm
post #4 of 8

I had not thought about the volume of frosting. I use a nice thick coat of frosting on my cakes (not just crumb coating). Maybe that's what I'm doing wrong. I thought crumbs would show through on the fondant (leave impressions) so I always make sure there's a nice layer of frosting underneath. The air bubbles I get are not small. They are 3-4 inches and HUGE. that's why I have trouble understanding where they came from. I've tried both frosting and fondanting right away and putting in the fridge before fondanting. I get them either way. The bubbles are not in the fondant. It's between the fondant and the frosting.

loriemoms Posted 26 May 2008 , 1:12am
post #5 of 8

one of the things you have to remember about fondant is that it SHOWS more flaws in your cake then hides them. Its not like buttercream where you can put on a nice thick layer and nobody sees the cake isn't cut even, etc.

You need to prep your cake so that it looks just the way you want it to look before you put on the fondant. that means no bumps or anything. Then put in a thin layer of buttercream, or syrup, as it is just there to hold up the fondant, not to hide anything. Your fondant isn't sticking properly to the cake because the buttercream is sliding or preventing it from forming to it. If you have large crumbs on your cake, you need to brush it off first before putting on the buttercream, so you have a nice smooth surface.

Give it a try on a small cake and see if that helps!

sistersorefeet Posted 26 May 2008 , 9:29pm
post #6 of 8

What are you rolling your fondant out on? I believe that rolling out on cornflour (cornstarch?) can cause some kind of reaction, possibly fermentation if in a warm atmosphere. Try rolling out on confectioners sugar.

sistersorefeet Posted 26 May 2008 , 9:32pm
post #7 of 8

What are you rolling your fondant out on? I believe that rolling out on cornflour (cornstarch?) can cause some kind of reaction, possibly fermentation if in a warm atmosphere. Try rolling out on confectioners sugar.

aezaidan Posted 7 Jun 2015 , 12:14am
post #8 of 8

Is it an air bubble in the fondant its self, or is it an air bubble trapped between the cake and the fondant? If it is the latter (I was having issues with this for the longest time,) what I do to try to help that is I will do a crumb coat of bc first. Then I take a skewer (like for kabobs) and push it through the entire cake, right in the middle all the way down to the cake board and pull it out, straight up. This makes a pathway for any air that is trapped in between the layers. I like to let the cake rest for a while to let it settle and get out all the air. Then do a thicker outer layer of bc as well before I cover it with fondant. Sometimes, if I don't have time to let it settle before I start my fondant work, I will do the same thing with a skewer even after I cover it with fondant! But I only do that if there is going to be a decoration on top that I can cover the hole with. Hope that is helpful!

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