Thumbs Up For Toba's "spackling" Technique!

Decorating By tobycat Updated 24 Dec 2008 , 10:19pm by Bonnie151

tobycat Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 12:33am
post #1 of 26

Just tried Toba Garrett's spackling technique (THe Well-Decorated Cake book), and it worked beautifully! I covered 3 of the 4 tiers on my most recent wedding cake with the "spackle" and it really made the cakes perfectly smooth. Also, I had a couple of chocolate tiers, and I just used white cake for the spackle on those and NO chocolate showed through when I iced it. I will use this technique from now on I believe. Just wanted to share. icon_smile.gif


25 replies
Amy729 Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 12:40am
post #2 of 26

can you describe the what you did? i am not familiar with the book

thanks icon_smile.gif

eriksmom Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 1:04am
post #3 of 26

What a great idea with the chocolate cake! that is always one thing I dread is the chocolate crumbs.

dailey Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 1:09am
post #4 of 26

i *love* this method! been using it on all my cakes lately...: )

Someonesmommy Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 1:20am
post #5 of 26

What is this spackling method and where can I find it?

jlo6024 Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 1:21am
post #6 of 26

What the heck?!?!?!??!?!

Susie53 Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 1:35am
post #7 of 26

I've never heard of spackling a cake, can you explain what this is?

BCJean Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 1:44am
post #8 of 26


Inquiring minds want to know.

rezzygirl Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 2:13am
post #9 of 26

Is that where you mix cake crumbs and frosting to make a paste?

rvercher23 Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 2:39am
post #10 of 26

I found this on another website.....

I'd also recommend trying her "spackle" idea under fondant. Just be sure to pop it in the refrigerator to harden up a little and you'll be rid of nearly all lumps, bumps and wobbles in your cake's surface and have a wonderfully smooth and flat fondant. It's really just taking your cake shavings/cut offs and crumbling them into some buttercream, spread it onto your just chilled crumb-coated cake and make this as smooth as possible, filling all gap and holes. This is then the nice flat surface your fondant will be laid on. A really handy "secret tip" to ridiculously smooth fondant!

nicole379 Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 2:42am
post #11 of 26

For some reason that doesn't sound easy to me.

tarheelgirl Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 2:50am
post #12 of 26

me either! icon_redface.gif Also, if you are adding crumbs how is it not making the fondant look bumpy instead of smooth??

KathyTW Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 2:59am
post #13 of 26

I just got this book and I was intregued by the "spackle" technique. I too though can't picture it making the cake smoother than just a crumb coat and thin layer of BC.

I'm curious to hear more opinions from people who have tried it.

indydebi Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 3:09am
post #14 of 26
Originally Posted by nicole379

For some reason that doesn't sound easy to me.

Same here. Sounds like more work than just icing or crumb coating the cake with some smooth BC. Plus the taste sounds nasty. Mooshy cake-n-icing on the side of the cake? For those who would peel off the fondant to eat the cake ... bleck! If I got served this, I'd probably pass on dessert ... and if you look at my pants size, you'd know that I dont' pass on dessert very often! icon_biggrin.gif

bobwonderbuns Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 3:10am
post #15 of 26

You mix the crumbs and buttercream to form like a dough but because of the buttercream in it you can spread it. Smooth it out, pop it in the frig to firm it up and you're ready to add the fondant.

indydebi Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 3:14am
post #16 of 26

But I don't have to take the time to mix the crumbs with the icing, I spread my icing, smooth it out, and I'm ready to add the fondant with no need to refrigerate. I"m still lost on the "easier" part. icon_confused.gif

dailey Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 3:57am
post #17 of 26

i suppose if you are one of the very few decorators who can cover cakes *flawlessly* with fondant then this is not for you. however, for the rest of us, this method is great! oh, and the taste is fine, especially if you are using smbc as opposed to crusting...

diane706 Posted 23 Dec 2008 , 3:20pm
post #18 of 26

It's so funny to hear that somebody else does this same idea!! I've never even heard of Toba Garrett!! My boyfriend who has an extensive background in construction (he spackles walls almost every day) taught me this idea and we use it all of the time. Maybe I should write a book?! Hee Hee icon_lol.gif It really does work great for those not-so-smooth areas on the cake before the final buttercream or fondant. I don't know if Toba mentions this in her book but I avoid using the outside (crust) part of the cake and just use the inside so if I'm making a lighter cake it doesn't show through the b-cream or fondant. And it tastes fine!

FlourPots Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 8:30pm
post #19 of 26

That's so there any place besides her book to actually see the process?

tonedna Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 8:40pm
post #20 of 26

I dont know..sounds to me like another way to do a crumbcoat.. icon_lol.gif

indydebi Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 8:44pm
post #21 of 26
Originally Posted by dailey

i suppose if you are one of the very few decorators who can cover cakes *flawlessly* with fondant then this is not for you.

I wouldn't say mine are "flawless" ... I've only done 2 fondant cakes so far, but I think they turned out nice and smooth just doing it the "less work" way ..... icon_smile.gif

johnson6ofus Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 8:54pm
post #22 of 26

I guess "spackle" would be needed if you had big potholes in the cake, but like others, think a crumb coat works fine. Seems like she does crumb coat, spackle, buttercream, fondant. Seems easier to do crumbcoat, buttercream and fondant.

Unless of course you had some cooking issues than would require gobs of buttercream to fill in---- like a big cracked cake or something. Hmmmmmm. Interesting thoughts all the same. Something to keep in mind in case of disater....

tobycat Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 9:28pm
post #23 of 26
Originally Posted by Amy729

can you describe the what you did? i am not familiar with the book

thanks icon_smile.gif

This is sooo easy! Just mix cake crumbs with icing and/or filling (I just used the bc icing) until you get a nice thick consistency that's spreadable. Toba spreads this on AFTER she crumb coats, but I just used it in place of the crumb coating, and it worked beautifully. Spread it on thick as you use it for a crumb coat. It fills in all the crevices and makes the cake perfectly smooth. I also shave the uneven edges off the cake before I do this so that it's really smooth. Chill until you're ready to ice. It makes the cake perfect. Check out my most recent wedding cake to see how well it worked.

Hope this helps. The book is great too! "The Well-Decorated Cake".


tobycat Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 9:32pm
post #24 of 26
Originally Posted by tonedna

I dont know..sounds to me like another way to do a crumbcoat.. icon_lol.gif

It is another kind of crumb coat, but I found it to be far superior to just using the icing. Icing has a lot of give, this method has less give to it. It fills in the gaps better -- any space is what I'm considering a gap. And, it made it so that the chocolate cake didn't show through at all because I used a different color cake to "spackle." As I said above, I just found this to be a better method for me. icon_smile.gif


DDiva Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 10:05pm
post #25 of 26

I've used her spackling method for years...since she demo'd it in a class here in NC. It IS another method of crumbcoating that she devised in an attempt to replicate the very smooth fondant covered cakes that English bakers achieve. Because their cakes are more dense and are first covered in marzipan, the fondant is going on an already smooth surface.

The crumbs that are mixed with buttercream, a little of your filling and even some liqueur, come from trimming the sides of your cake. You can use this mixture as a filling (people love it and can figure out what it is). When I level or sculpt cakes, I take those pieces and run them through the food processor and store them in bags in the fridge. I always crumbs ready for the spackle.

Now, in addition to filling any gaps , it does make for an incredibly smooth surface. I don't do the crumbcoat that she mentions in her book. Like a previous responder I just do the 'spackle', which is the consistency of oatmeal. Too much thicker and it will fall off or tear your cake. It does need to be refrigerated to set (I usually allow overnight or several hours for this). I then do a very light crumbcoat with my buttercream and apply my fondant. If done correctly, your fondant will be perfect.

I also use this method for all other cakes. Yes, it takes more time, but once it's a part of your process, it's not a big deal. And the result is well worth the effort.

The method is in her 'The Well Decorated Cake' book which you can purchase on Amazon for around $10 now. It is money well spent.

Bonnie151 Posted 24 Dec 2008 , 10:19pm
post #26 of 26
Originally Posted by DDiva

Because their cakes are more dense and are first covered in marzipan, the fondant is going on an already smooth surface.

Yes, and quite often you'll find wedding sponge cakes here with two thin layers of fondant to replicate the smoothness you get with a marizipan/fondant cover. This spackling sounds worth a try to me - I'm a bit obsessive about getting perfection with my fondant (or rather trying but not always achieving...)! icon_razz.gif

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