Pastillage Help Please! I Really Want To Know

Baking By Yorkiemum Updated 19 Mar 2011 , 3:33pm by Marianna46

Yorkiemum Posted 3 Feb 2011 , 12:07am
post #1 of 16

I love the look of pastillage and really want to learn to work with it. I made my first batch last night and was able to make a flat disc but all it does is crumble if I try to make anything else. Does anyone work with it and if you do can you tell me what I am doing wrong? I measured carefully but it seems to dry. Is there any hope for what I have?

15 replies
dreamcakesmom Posted 3 Feb 2011 , 12:27am
post #2 of 16

what is the recipe you are using?

dynee Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 3:14pm
post #3 of 16

I know there are people on here that know about pastillage. I don't happen to be one of them.... My only attempt ended in the wastebasket. Now I am planning a cake where I want to make a table that looks like it is made of bronze. I think maybe the solution is to make the top out of pastillage and then cover it with modeling chocolate for the texture. Does anyone have an opinion of how that would work. Does Pastillage breakdown like Royal Icing? Help us please!!!

cakeyouverymuch Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 5:15pm
post #4 of 16

In my experience anything you can do with pastillage, you can do for more easily with gum paste. Gum paste is far more forgiving and has a far longer drying time than pastillage. And once its dried a little bit, pastillage is just waste basket filler.

Yorkiemum--Pastillage IS good for making plaques as a ground on which to display gum paste and fondant work. The pink heart plaque on this cake is pastillage The ruffles and small flowers are gum paste. The top of this cake is also pastillage , but the flowers leaves and bow are all gum paste.

dynee--The table here is completely made of gum paste . I cut the table top with the garret frill cutter and used various small cutters to imprint the design on the top. I used a # 6 Wilton tip to cut the circles that make the lacy design. Once it was dry I painted it black with Wilton gel mixed with vodka. The umbrella is gum paste as well. I used wires over a glass globe to give it its shape and the base is gum paste over heavy gauge wire. I did each section of the base separately and joined them after they were dry. The pole for the umbrella is a skewer and it goes all the way to the bottom as a support for the whole piece. The chairs (which I'll admit are a tad sloppy) are RKT covered in gum paste, but there is no reason they couldn't be made the same way as the table. The trick is to give yourself enough time and to have the patience to allow each piece to dry completely before assembly. I started with the table top a month in advance for the housewarming cake that it was a part of. The table top took about four days to dry completely I dried it on a sponge surface and turned it over every few hours. HTH

dynee Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 8:37pm
post #5 of 16

Thank you very much, cakeyouverymuch.
This helps a lot. I already have some gumpaste mixed up. I'm making a bench and trestle table.

cakeyouverymuch Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 10:40pm
post #6 of 16


Are you planning to make individual pieces and "construct" the table the way you would make it out of wood? Will you post a photo when it is done? I'd be interested to see your finished product.

Marianna46 Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 11:06pm
post #7 of 16

I looked at your cakes, cakeyouverymuch, and they're wonderful. I'm totally enamored of your patio furniture, as I mentioned in my comment to your photo. I've always wanted to make the beach scene to end all beach scenes, but I've never known now to make the chairs, the tables, the umbrella, etc. You've given me a great idea. I'd always heard that pastillage was unforgiving because it dried so fast, so I think I'll stick with gumpaste for these things after your comments.

cakeyouverymuch Posted 27 Feb 2011 , 11:43pm
post #8 of 16


If I was going to make a solid plaque for a cake topper to sit on or something similar, I'd probably go with pastillage because its fairly cheap to make, and dries quickly, but for everything else I use gum paste. Except for flowers. For flowers I always use a mix of 50/50 gum paste/fondant by weight. I find that I can roll the mix out a good deal thinner so the end product looks alot more delicate. The one drawback is that the mix dries more slowly than gum paste alone, but even that is not a problem if you give yourself enough lead time.

icer101 Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 12:16am
post #9 of 16

i love to work with pastiallage. Took classes with mercedes some years back. the ace of cake ,cake in my pics, all done in pastiallge. (everything on top) Lots of people make their flowers with nothing else, because of the easy breakage of gumpaste. pastiallage dries harder that g/p . I use mercedes recipe. If you want the recipe, let me know. I can work with it as easy as it od g/p. It takes a little practice,etc. hth

cakeyouverymuch Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 12:32am
post #10 of 16


Given that there is always the possibility that I've been working with an inferior product, I'd love to have your recipe to see if it makes a difference to the workability.

imagenthatnj Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 12:52am
post #11 of 16

Here's some long info about working with pastillage.

dynee Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 2:44am
post #12 of 16

I intend to build the table in parts and the bench is solid so I am making that out of RKT and modeling chocolate. I will "burnish" the chocolate with super gold lustre dust to make it look like bronze. The cake is not due until mar. 16 th.

Marianna46 Posted 28 Feb 2011 , 10:45am
post #13 of 16

I've never needed a plaque to decorate a cake (although I did take a workshop in making fondant plaques, strangely enough), but I'll keep the possibility in mind in case it ever comes up, cakeyouverymuch. They use pastillage a lot here in Mexico for cake toppers, but they usually aren't very detailed (now I understand why!) or very pretty (mostly, I think, because they're from commercial bakeries that are only interested in knocking out their product as fast as they can). I'd love to have your recipe, too, icer101, if it wouldn't be too much trouble.

dynee Posted 19 Mar 2011 , 12:54pm
post #14 of 16

I tried to post this yesterday but I couldn't get it to attach on the post so I waited to post the cake pics.
I made the bench out of rice cereal treats and the table out of gumpaste and everything was covered in modeling chocolate. The figures have armatures of wire and treats. The tiger is white modeling chocolate tinted yellow. To get the bronze look, I rubbed on super bronze lustre dust. The cake was for the first annual Mizzou Cake Challenge. This year it was judged by Duff Goldman.
The cake was to be delivered at 8:30 on Wed. the 16th and the whole day was quite an ordeal. My mother had died on the previous Saturday and was being buried on wednesday at 10 that same day. Then the Duff program was at 7:30. They didn't announce the winners until 9:30 and then we had to pick up our cakes that same evening. At 59 and 3/4, I'm just not used to those 17 hour days. It all worked out and my mother would have wanted me to finish the cake.

Marianna46 Posted 19 Mar 2011 , 3:33pm
post #15 of 16

Dynee, first let me say how sorry I am that you've lost your mother. It's one of life's hardest times, isn't it? But I'm very happy that your cake - which is fantastic, by the way, did so well in the competition. Duff is no fool - he knows a gorgeous cake when he sees it.

Marianna46 Posted 19 Mar 2011 , 3:33pm
post #16 of 16

Dynee, first let me say how sorry I am that you've lost your mother. It's one of life's hardest times, isn't it? But I'm very happy that your cake - which is fantastic, by the way - did so well in the competition. Duff is no fool - he knows a gorgeous cake when he sees it.

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