Using Fondant Or Gumpaste For Modelling?

Decorating By xSam12x Updated 10 Aug 2010 , 1:20pm by Motorhead

xSam12x Posted 2 Aug 2010 , 9:41pm
post #1 of 28

Hi,
i need to make a cake for a baby girl. after making a cake not long ago and my fondant icing flopping and melting very fast! im worried about this happening again. ive seen gumpaste used for making flowers but can this be used to make baby/other models and characters too? is it harder to work with? any tips pleaseeee icon_smile.gif

thank you!

27 replies
tcwheeler Posted 2 Aug 2010 , 11:15pm
post #2 of 28

I've used fondant to make figures, both MMF and Wilton's fondant. I have never used gumpaste. However, I have seen a lot of recommendations to use a 50/50 fondant/gumpaste mixture for figures. I've never made a baby. I found some at Hobby Lobby that are perfect and I use those.

cfp8 Posted 3 Aug 2010 , 4:47pm
post #3 of 28

I've only used fondant, but based on so many recommendations, I am going to use gumpaste (or a 50/50 mix) for my next figures, numbers, etc since it dries harder.

tcwheeler Posted 3 Aug 2010 , 5:25pm
post #4 of 28

yeah. The last firgures that I made dried for at least 24 hrs., under a fan too. They weren't totally hard yet then. I was using MMF.

zespri Posted 3 Aug 2010 , 8:17pm
post #5 of 28

question: you said your fondant melted very fast, did you have it in a plastic container? Because that will do it.... You need to wait until it's had time to dry in the air. If you are putting it away for future use, I've heard that a cardboard box is better. But if transporting, then plastic is fine, as long as it's had time to dry first. I learned this by making some lovely cupcake toppers, and putting them directly onto the cupcakes, and into a tupperware container. The next morning, they were all shiny and melty looking... arrghh!! But I just left the lid off the container for a few hours and they were right as rain.

I'm new to this too, but have been researching the gumpaste versus fondant thing lately too. I suggest using fondant if you can get away with it, because apparently gumpaste does not taste good. It's edible, but from what I hear you would not want to eat it really, especially as it's so hard. I've been told to use gumpaste for larger things that might flop, and fondant for little things like cupcake toppers.

Interesting tip, to use half and half. Can anyone explain why? Why would you not just use 100% gumpaste if you were going to use any at all? Is it harder to work with?

tcwheeler Posted 3 Aug 2010 , 8:26pm
post #6 of 28

Gumpaste/fondant mixture because fondant makes gumpaste taste better and gumpaste gives fondant sturdiness. icon_smile.gif In my humble opinion, most folks probably don't eat the decorations anyway. They want to try it just to see if you're telling the truth that it's edible. My figures have been so big, they'd be sick if they ate them! lol

zespri Posted 3 Aug 2010 , 8:28pm
post #7 of 28

Thanks tcwheeler icon_smile.gif Just one more question, I have bought some tylose powder, to transform fondant into gumpaste. Using your logic, if I just used half the recommended tylose powder, then I'd get the same result, yes?

It only just arrived via courier an hour ago, I can't wait to get home and play with it!

BeanCountingBaker Posted 3 Aug 2010 , 8:39pm
post #8 of 28

I've done some fun little animals (in my pictures) with MMF. I have a 3-year old running around and I'm afraid to put gum paste in my fondant because I'm never sure when I'm going to get intrupped. I know that the MMF will be less sensitive to drying out while I'm making the figures if I have to walk away for a few minutes. (lots of trips to the potty when mommy is making cake) It's pretty humid in Missouri right now, but my MMF figures get pretty solid when left in the open air for 24 hours.

tcwheeler Posted 3 Aug 2010 , 8:49pm
post #9 of 28

http://cakecentral.com/recipes/15339/tylose-gumpaste

According to this article, add 1 T. tylose. Never used it before so I can't give you my expert opinion. icon_smile.gif Agree with BeanCountingBaker, I'm in the most humid part of the country, so my figures probably need longer than 24 hrs. to really harden. The last time that I made, it just seemed that they weren't as sturdy as before. Amazing how extra moisture in the air can cause frustration!

xSam12x Posted 5 Aug 2010 , 1:45pm
post #10 of 28

Hi, thanks for the replys icon_smile.gif
zespri i think you have a good point, ive always heard to put things in boxes to stop them drying so this is probably where i went wrong :/ i suppose we learn from our mistakes. i made umbrellas for a beach scene and as soon as i touched them they were flopping and turning watery. i have some of the hardening powder thats been mentioned which i got from a small cake shop but was never told what to even do with it so its been stuck in the cupboard might be a good time to try it out!

sam x

ycknits Posted 5 Aug 2010 , 2:03pm
post #11 of 28

For modeling figures and making flowers, I use at least 50% gumpaste in my fondant/gumpaste mix. I'm making monkeys this week and it takes forever for these things to dry and setup. The gumpaste helps the fondant hold its shape while the slow drying process takes place. It also keeps the fondant from cracking. When I'm doing figures with much mass involved (bodies, heads, etc.) I try to start at least a week ahead of time. Otherwise, make a batch of rice krispie treats, use them like modeling clay to form parts, ice & smooth with chocolate, and then cover with fondant/gumpaste mixture. These process much faster.

Motorhead Posted 5 Aug 2010 , 2:57pm
post #12 of 28

i've made a couple figures. i first started using just mmf, but i found figures did not hold their shape as well without having as much time to dry either, even with supports (toothpicks), i have tried strait gumpaste, but it dosn't taste as well, does not get as smooth and is often showing cracks and is brittle. i've tried the 50/50 mixture. but honestly, now i use tylose powder in my fondant. it works really great, there is no bad taste and the fondant dries up really quite nice. HTH

zespri Posted 5 Aug 2010 , 9:32pm
post #13 of 28

I just bought some tylose powder, how much do you use for modelling? I have heard that 1/2 teaspoon per 250g of fondant makes gumpaste, how much would you use for making little figures? 1/4 teaspoon?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Motorhead

now i use tylose powder in my fondant. it works really great, there is no bad taste and the fondant dries up really quite nice. HTH


SoSasha Posted 5 Aug 2010 , 10:21pm
post #14 of 28

I first practiced figures with solely gum paste and was constantly plagued with "permanent" seams and cracking. The benefit is that it dries harder and sturdier, but it can also be very unforgiving (e.g. if an arm is drying a little off-kilter and you correct it there will definitely be visible dry-cracks).

Now, like Motorhead said, I just mix in tylose-powder with a bit of fondant, knead it in, and use that. The amounts really vary depending on type of fondant... you just have to play with it until it "feels right". The youtube member "09165067633" has a great video about what texture to look for if you can dig it up.

A tylose/fondant mix will definitely take longer to dry but I think the final piece looks more "polished"- it's also great when matching colors because it all starts from the same batch icon_smile.gif

But I would definitely stick with straight gumpaste for "cut-outs" like numbers etc. for stability.

Motorhead Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 1:05pm
post #15 of 28

i concure with sosasha, i just add little bit of tylose to my mmf, kneed it in really good, then test to see if it will hold it's shape on its own, if not, i add more tylose and repeat the process. the amounts i use always vary on the amount of mmf i'm using and the humidity of my house on that day. it's always an experiment, but one that is eaily gagued. have fun! i also agree that the utube video is helpful, just play around until you achieve the desired texture of the fondant. hth

zespri Posted 6 Aug 2010 , 7:42pm
post #16 of 28

So I gave it go last night. I had some already mixed colour fondant, so I added a pinch to that, and was really pleased with the result! It did make it easier to work with, it's harder this morning, and doesn't taste horrible at all!

Thanks guys, I'm really stoked, and will never look back from Tylose!!

Motorhead, do you make your own MMF? I see so many people talk about it, but the effort involved in making it seems too great for me right now (I have a wee baby), so have never tried it. Can you buy it?

xSam12x Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 10:23am
post #17 of 28

Ive got gum tragacanth, does this do the same as tylose? when i mix it in with the fondant do i need to leave it a while before starting to make figures or can i use it instantly. thanks icon_smile.gif

zespri Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 7:07pm
post #18 of 28

I asked the same question in another thread Sam, and someone kindly responded with the following:

"Gum arabic is NOT what you want. It doesn't do the job the same way, or very well.

Gum trag is more expensive and loses strength over time. Once added to fondant, it has to rest for 24hrs. before using it.

Tylose is the best for this application. You can add it and work it into the paste, using it immediately if necessary (but allowing it to rest for 30 mins. is even better). It seems to hold it's strength forever--I have some I bought 3 yrs. ago and it works fine. "




Quote:
Originally Posted by xSam12x

Ive got gum tragacanth, does this do the same as tylose? when i mix it in with the fondant do i need to leave it a while before starting to make figures or can i use it instantly. thanks icon_smile.gif


katwomen1up Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 7:45pm
post #19 of 28

I have a question, do you have to mix the tylose with anything, seeing as it's a powder and I'm using pre made fondant?

allaboutcakeuk Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 7:54pm
post #20 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by katwomen1up

I have a question, do you have to mix the tylose with anything, seeing as it's a powder and I'm using pre made fondant?




Hi you don't need to add the tylose to anything. I use both tylose and gum trag (gum trag being much more expensive though!) in the same way. I add it to pre-made fondant all the time. I just sprinkle a tsp on my work surface and place the fondant over the top and knead it in until all incorporated. Works a treat

icon_biggrin.gif

zespri Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 7:55pm
post #21 of 28

I watched a youtube video, the lady just kneaded the fondant like you always do, then sprinkled some tylose onto it and kneaded it in just as you would knead in colouring.

Quote:
Originally Posted by katwomen1up

I have a question, do you have to mix the tylose with anything, seeing as it's a powder and I'm using pre made fondant?


katwomen1up Posted 7 Aug 2010 , 8:08pm
post #22 of 28

Thank you, I appreciate the help! icon_biggrin.gif

Motorhead Posted 9 Aug 2010 , 1:16pm
post #23 of 28

zespri-i do make my own mmf-and it used to take me a long time- but after reading posts on here, realized there was an easier way (especially if you have a wee one!) do you have a kitchen aid mixer? all i do now is heat up my marshmallows in the mircrowave, then pour into my mixer with ps, then add the rest of my ps and let fly! very little kneeding involved which is great for giving my arms a rest. i had purchased some fondant, but after making my own, much perfer the taste of homemade (less chemically tasting) although i have read here that some of the new fondants have different flavors and taste quite well?

allaboutcakeuk Posted 9 Aug 2010 , 2:32pm
post #24 of 28

I've never made my own fondant or heard of MMF until I came on this site. Is it really that easy to make and what is it like for covering celebration cakes. I use Renshaws which is the most widely available here in the UK

zespri Posted 9 Aug 2010 , 7:14pm
post #25 of 28

Hiya

No, I don't have a kitchen aid mixer. Do you use a particular attachment for the fondant? I just have a regular mixer with beaters, and with those squiggly attachments, I think they might be for bread.....? Which sort do you use for MMF?

We only have petticine fondant available here, and it doesn't taste chemically at all, but I'd still like to try MMF!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Motorhead

zespri-i do make my own mmf-and it used to take me a long time- but after reading posts on here, realized there was an easier way (especially if you have a wee one!) do you have a kitchen aid mixer? all i do now is heat up my marshmallows in the mircrowave, then pour into my mixer with ps, then add the rest of my ps and let fly! very little kneeding involved which is great for giving my arms a rest. i had purchased some fondant, but after making my own, much perfer the taste of homemade (less chemically tasting) although i have read here that some of the new fondants have different flavors and taste quite well?


zespri Posted 9 Aug 2010 , 7:16pm
post #26 of 28

What's a celebration cake? I always assumed it just meant birthday's, or anniversary's, or whatever. Is it something special?



Quote:
Originally Posted by allaboutcakeuk

I've never made my own fondant or heard of MMF until I came on this site. Is it really that easy to make and what is it like for covering celebration cakes. I use Renshaws which is the most widely available here in the UK


allaboutcakeuk Posted 9 Aug 2010 , 9:05pm
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by zespri

What's a celebration cake? I always assumed it just meant birthday's, or anniversary's, or whatever. Is it something special?



Quote:
Originally Posted by allaboutcakeuk

I've never made my own fondant or heard of MMF until I came on this site. Is it really that easy to make and what is it like for covering celebration cakes. I use Renshaws which is the most widely available here in the UK




yeah sorry that's what i mean - I use it to cover all things like birthdays etc

Motorhead Posted 10 Aug 2010 , 1:20pm
post #28 of 28

zespri-i use the padle attachment to make the mmf. not sure if a regualar hand mixer is heavy duty enough to withstand the gooienss of mmf! have you tried just making it by hand? i used to all the time until i got my ka. basically you just melt your mallows in a greased glass bowl in the mirocwave (30 secs at a time), them pour them out into a well of ps on your greased counter. continue to kneed in ps untill you reach the right consistancy you want. then lightly grease and stick in zip lock bag and let rest. hth! i also substitue coco powder here for choc. fondant-delicious!! or if you need to make a dark color (red or black) i would definetly add some color to the melter mallow! thumbs_up.gif

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