Hello. I am decorating a cake for a friends sister who is turning 21. they requested a not so sweet fluffy frosting. I have never made this type of frosting before. After researching, I have come to the conclusion that an italian buttercream is what I need to make as the meringue and regular sugar will be less sweet and more airy. My question is, can I frost the cake with the italian buttercream and still use fondant to decorate? For example, the birthday girl likes palm trees so I was going to frost the cake with the buttercream and then place a fondant palm tree and flowers on the cake. However, I have heard that the frosting needs refrigerated and the fondant does not. If I place the cake in the fridge and then take it out, will the fondant get moist and cause colors to run on the cake? I have to make this cake this weekend so a quick response is much needed!
I do that combination all the time, no problem. I ice the cakes smooth, chill them and then roll out/cut my fondant shapes. They just stick right to the IMBC, no additional icing/water/gel needed as "glue". The colours have never run for me, no.
Here's a helpful how-to lesson on making IMBC:
I refrigerate nearly all of my IMBC cakes and don't think I've ever had an issue with fondant running on them. You'll be fine. Follow antonia74's smoothing method and your cake will look as smooth as glass - trust me on this one!! http://cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-661033-plastering.html
The only real problem with refrigerating fondant is if you have 3D decorations that need to retain their form (like figures, or a flower) in which case I'd advise putting deco's on after it has come out of the fridge, or else make things in advance with straight gumpaste and allow plenty of time to dry before using on cake. But if you are just putting 2D fondant shapes, stripes, etc. on the sides/top of the cake, you can refrigerate it!
Ironically I have the opposite experience. I have a much harder time with SMBC. No matter how diligently I follow the directions, I always manage to scramble my egg whites, a problem you don't have with IMBC. But I do agree that if you are more competent at that part than I am (LOL!) that it IS actually an easier method.