I started working on the roses for my aunt's cake, but no matter how much I knead the gumpaste or how much Crisco I use, it's still dry. And when I think it's finally smooth enough, the petals crack when I fluff them. Please help!
what brand are you using?
Wilton. It's my only option because the only local place I have to get it is Walmart
hm that's strange. i was going to suggest wilton because i love working with it. granted, i've never worked with anything else, but i've never had a problem with it. sorry, i don't know what to suggest. with a little crisco kneaded in, it's usually fine for me. you've already tried that, so i don't know what else to do.
hopefully someone else will be able to chime in for you!
Was it crusty when you opened the bag?
I only use Wilton and I've never had any problem. Sometimes I find it a little sticky, but I just rub a little corn starch on my hands and problem solved. I've never kneaded any crisco into it. I just use it as is.
Maybe it was an old package? Could be a possibility. If WalMart is the only place you have near you to purchase, chances are their stock might not be "fresh". I'm just guessing though.
I have had at least one package that was a little dry around the edges when I opened it, but one I started working with it, it was fine.
Im assuming that since you can only get gumpaste at walmart that there is no place to buy tylose powder? If you can get it or order it for the future you should try the Nicholas Lodge recipe for gumpaste. It is the best and its cheaper to make your own than to buy the wilton. If it was crusty, it was starting to dry out from a hole in the bag not sealed tight. Thats the only thing I can think of besides a bad batch.
Wiltons gumpaste is good but is very temperamental. For some reasons sometimes is too hard and dry, and sometimes is too soft.
For dryness just add a bit of fondant. It will help.
For softness you can add more sugar, cornstarch or Tylose. Be careful on how much you add.
Always work with small portions and only fix the portions you will be working with.
That way you fix as it goes along since the consistency of the gumpaste will change after the bag is open.
I love Wilton gumpaste and that is the only kind I use. I mix it 50/50 with Wilton Fondant and I don't have any trouble with it cracking or drying properly.
I knead my Wilton gumpaste first with a little shortening on my hands and then I add the fondant and knead that together. If it starts to stick to my hands then I rub a little more shoretning on my hands. When I work with the gumpaste and actually make the flowers, etc. then I dust with a little cornstarch.
There have been times when the ends of the gumapste package have been dry and hard and I remove those pieces as I do not want any kind of lumps in my gumpaste. I have also put it in the microwave for a few seconds to help with the kneading if it feels and looks dry and then I add a little shortening on my hands when kneading.
I'm not at all satisfied with that gumpaste, especially considering it cost me 8.50. I only took a small amount out, so I'm taking it back to the store for a refund. Nothing I did worked. I ended up making the flowers out of fondant. I live in a small town, and I don't think many people use gumpaste. So there's no telling how long that had been on the shelf.
I'm going to Michael's Friday, so I'm just going to buy some tylose powder. Then I can just make my own and will know that it's fresh.
Thanks, everyone, for the advice. Btw, I'm adding the picture of the cake to the gallery now. Bare in mind that I'm a rookie. It's pretty rough!
Tylose gumpaste is definitevly the best!