Answer This ?...in Your Opinion...

Decorating By Heatherly30 Updated 10 Feb 2009 , 3:46am by indydebi

Heatherly30 Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 6:50pm
post #1 of 35

...which is easier and/or quicker...

Icing a cake in buttercream, or covering a cake in fondant?

34 replies
j-pal Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 6:59pm
post #2 of 35

No contest - Icing a cake in buttercream. If I'm doing fondant - I still have to ice in buttercream, plus roll out the fondant, cover, cut and smooth.

FromScratch Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:02pm
post #3 of 35

I say fondant. When I ice a cake in buttercream I have tomake sure it's perfect. This takes a while (especially if you are using an icing that doesn't crust). If I am doing fondant I can get it just about right and then the fondant covers any imperfections. Rolling fondant doesn't take long at all and smoothing it on a cake is easy. I'd do fondant over buttercream anyday.

tx_cupcake Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:03pm
post #4 of 35

I only recently started doing bc cakes, so to me fondant is much faster.

You're going to get a lot of conflicting answers here, I'm afraid.

rockysmommy Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:03pm
post #5 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by j-pal

No contest - Icing a cake in buttercream. If I'm doing fondant - I still have to ice in buttercream, plus roll out the fondant, cover, cut and smooth.




Very true...

Chef_Rinny Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:10pm
post #6 of 35

It all depends on what you are comfortable with. I personally find buttercream easier, b/c I don't do a ton of fondant cakes.

Daisy135 Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:15pm
post #7 of 35

Until you gain experience w/ fondant there are lots of things that can go wrong & slow you down esp. if covering a large cake. For me, right now, I'd have to say BC.

mellormom Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:23pm
post #8 of 35

Fondant. BC is way to hard to get perfect! Plus you always see a spot you missed after it is to late to fix it.
I love MMF it is easy to make and cheap.
Jen...

Ayanami Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:26pm
post #9 of 35

To me, they're the same. The amount of time & effort I spend trying to get a PERFECT BC finish vs the time I spend rolling out fondant is about the same.

I enjoy creating with MMF cause you can do so much & it's fun to work with. You get a flawless finish (if done right) but it usually has a "round" appearance to it. So for crisp, clean, nice lines & corners, I do BC. For fun, novelty designs, I do MMF.

I don't think either one is faster or easier than the other. They both have their pro's & con's. IMO.

HTH icon_smile.gif

cakes22 Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:27pm
post #10 of 35

I think there are a lot of variables with each, and I am in NO WAY an expert on either! icon_cry.gif I have worked with both & have had trouble with both. You can have a good experience with fondant one day & the next time horrible, even though you think you have done everything the same there is usually something that is a little different (weather, temp etc). Same with BC (see my post on BC pulling off cake). The cake gods might be smiling one day and smite you the next! icon_mad.gif

luv2cake Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:27pm
post #11 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by mellormom

Fondant. BC is way to hard to get perfect! Plus you always see a spot you missed after it is to late to fix it.
I love MMF it is easy to make and cheap.
Jen...




My thoughts exactly! icon_smile.gif

Heatherly30 Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:28pm
post #12 of 35

I guess I'm asking because it takes me HOURS to ice in bc, and I'm still never pleased with it. I have all of Sharon Zambito's videos, but I'm still a novice. I've never covered with fondant because I have been terrified to try it. I know I need to try it out though.

My daughter's bday is this Saturday, but we have ax extremely busy week (bday pics, day at the spa...I know, poor me, well, and probably a funeral). Just trying to figure out what will be the best option for me in making this cake in a short amount of time!

Recommendations?

Win Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:29pm
post #13 of 35

Having done BC for years, I find fondant a refreshing change. I've been using it about two years, now. In my humble opinion it takes the appearance of a cake to whole new heights. As well, I'd toil over BC and never truly feel I had the "perfect" finish. With fondant, it always seems to have a polished look.

Win Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:31pm
post #14 of 35

Heatherly30: I'd say.... If you have never worked with fondant then stick to BC for this weekend. Fondant does take a little finessing when you first start. Wait to work with it for another occasion. I'm sure you are just being hard on yourself and see the imperfections others will never pick up on. icon_biggrin.gif

KellBell22 Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 7:33pm
post #15 of 35

How old is your daughter going to be? Because honestly, she'll probably just be so thrilled that her mom MADE her a cake rather than bought one she won't notice the imperfections in the buttercream. I made my daughter her birthday cake, and did the fondant thing for the first time on it and personally, I would go with the buttercream option. It's tastier than the fondant, which on the cake I did got super hard and the kids hardly ate any. The kids are going to be more interested in how the cake tastes after the WOW factor is gone, and I'm a big fan of the frosting. Anyway, hope that helps a little.

Ayanami Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 8:11pm
post #16 of 35

If you are terrified of trying MMF & have never worked with it before, then I would just stick to BC for this Saturday at least. Do your caking in steps to reduce stress.

I always make & color my BC on day 1, then bake my cakes on day 2 and assemble & decorate on day 3. That way I don't have to allow myself so much time on just one day.

I have only recently begun to use the Melvira method of smoothing my BC & IT ROCKS!!!!!!!!! I can't believe I waited sooooo long to try it!

http://www.cakecentral.com/article83-quick-easy-smooth-icing-using.html

I purchased a 2 pack of 6" foam roller covers from Wal-mart & a handle to fit for less than $5.00 ( I think ) & I also bought a 3 pack of dry wall putty knives (1" 2" 6") for $1.97. These tools are priceless! I don't ice a cake without them anymore! thumbs_up.gif

I also got a 12" paint shield that I use to smooth the tops of my cakes with one long smooth swipe. I use this before I roll the icing with my foam roller.

BC doesn't have to be terribly hard or time consuming. I waited way too long before I started using the wonderful tips & tricks on this site.
LL

Wing-Ding Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 8:22pm
post #17 of 35

I just recently tried Melvira's method with the foam rollers. I tried and tired and I finally threw away the directions. It wasn't working for me at ALL. I followed the directions to a T. I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong.

I prefer either. Buttercream or fondant. I don't find any "quickness" with either.

Ayanami Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 8:48pm
post #18 of 35

Wing-Ding wrote:

Quote:
Quote:

I just recently tried Melvira's method with the foam rollers. I tried and tired and I finally threw away the directions. It wasn't working for me at ALL. I followed the directions to a T. I couldn't figure out what I was doing wrong.





I use Indydebi's BC recipe & I let it crust for at least 5 minutes (or more depends on the weather). I have never tried the Melvira Method with any other BC recipe though. Maybe your recipe caused a different effect? (shrug)

When I do the Melvira Method, I apply zero amount of pressure at first, using only the weight of the roller. Then as I get a feel for how the BC is crusting & reacting to the roller, I apply more pressure as needed on the extra rough looking spots.

Here are a couple of pics from before I started using the MM & after.
LL
LL

Heatherly30 Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 8:57pm
post #19 of 35

My daughter could care less...if it's cake, she'll eat it! I just want to do something nice and possibly challenge myself. Under time constraints, I should probably just use bc...grrrr...I dread it!

KellBell, I totally agree...not fond of the taste of fondant, nor texture. I feel like I need to learn it, but I truly can't understand why ppl want cakes in fondant.

FromScratch Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 9:26pm
post #20 of 35

You want to cover a cake in fondant when you want to apply heavier decorations to the sides like swags and gumpaste flowers. In a BC cake they can slide/fall off. icon_smile.gif Plus many people prefer the smooth canvas that fondant provides.

I don't mind the taste of fondant. If find for more people it's a textural thing. They don't want to chew their icing. That's why I always put a full layer of BC under my fondant... so when people ultimately peel off the fondant the will have an icing to enjoy. icon_biggrin.gif

lillielu Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 12:21am
post #21 of 35

I prefer using buttercream, because it tastes better than ay fondant I've ever tasted, and when given a choice my clients always request my buttercream. I also use the paint shield when smoothing my buttercream.

lillielu Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 12:21am
post #22 of 35

I prefer using buttercream, because it tastes better than ay fondant I've ever tasted, and when given a choice my clients always request my buttercream. I also use the paint shield when smoothing my buttercream.

khoudek Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 12:29am
post #23 of 35

I don't really have a preference, though you can do so much with fondant. As to smoothing buttercream, a big spatula first, let it crust a bit and then I smooth more by laying Viva paper towel on the crusted icing and go over it with a fondant smoother.

mbt4955 Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 12:45am
post #24 of 35

Paint shield - that is a new one for me. I have a horrible time with the top of my cakes, so I will be going to WalMart tomorrow!

jamiekwebb Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 1:05am
post #25 of 35

I prefer BC. If you get it relativly smooth while icing then you can use the viva method and get it to look as good as fondant.

sweetneice Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 1:08am
post #26 of 35

Fondant for me too!

indydebi Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 1:13am
post #27 of 35

"Better" is going to depend on a number of factors, such as the years a person has done either, which they are most comfortable in, and their natural talent (I believe anyone can learn anything, but some have a natural talent that makes them more inclined to be better at, for example, canvas art compared to icing art.)

At this point, I prefer BC because it's what I've done for 30 years. I can have a 3-4 tier cake iced and decorated in as little as 2 hours, depending on the decor. My icing crusts well and Melvira's roller puts the finishing touches on it in seconds.

Just today, though, I did a dummy fondant cake. It's one that looks like a wedding dress. Been wanting to try it for a long time, so I made a dummy for a bridal show. Had to start over a couple of times (it's only my 4th or 5th fondant cake) but had this 4 tier cake done in about 4 hours. (It sure seemed easier to put fondant on a real cake, though!)

Quote:
Quote:

You want to cover a cake in fondant when you want to apply heavier decorations to the sides like swags and gumpaste flowers. In a BC cake they can slide/fall off.


jkalman, my first fondant work was a cake that looked like theater curtains. I iced it in BC (the bottom 2 tiers) then added the curtain swags. They stayed on great! thumbs_up.gif

I don't think there is a real answer to which one is easier/quicker. There are too many variables involved.

tracey1970 Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 1:45am
post #28 of 35

Fondant ... I like buttercream, but it takes so loooooong to smooth. Fondant goes on smooth for the most part.

kakeladi Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 1:59am
post #29 of 35

If you can handle pie dough you can handle fondanticon_wink.gif
Just think of fondant as sweet pie dough.....it's made basically the same way.....with powdered sugar instead of flouricon_smile.gif

My 1st preference is b'cream. If you apply it w/a quick icer tip, then smooth w/a bench scraper it should take only aobut 2-5 minutes to ice an average cake. Work on a turntable. Run that scraper once around and you should be finished.
I'm wondering if your icing is not thin enough? Did you say you have SugarShack's b'cream video? And you're still having trouble? hhmmmm

indydebi Posted 10 Feb 2009 , 2:19am
post #30 of 35
Quote:
Originally Posted by kakeladi

If you can handle pie dough you can handle fondanticon_wink.gif
Just think of fondant as sweet pie dough.....it's made basically the same way.....with powdered sugar instead of flouricon_smile.gif



THAT'S why it took me this long to try fondant! I can cook .... I can cater ... I can create wedding cakes ... I make dang good cookies ....

I can't make a pie to save my a$$!!

Whoever coined the phrase "easy as pie", never saw or tasted the crappy ones I've made in my lifetime!

And thus my theory on "cooking from scratch is only better if the baker (ahem! PIE baker!) is good at it!"

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