Hi, newbie here. My wife and I have decided to bake a cake for our son's 1st birthday on 4/23. His party is Jungle themed, and we saw an image of a 3 tiered cake on Google images. The first tier is a zebra print, the second giraffe, and the third was I think leopard or so. We tried using store bought fondant for the bottom and middle tier, just to get the feel of working with it. Our first few tries were OK, nothing remarkable. After looking over countless videos on youtube, I think we could make it better, but we have a few issues. I've read that marshmallow fondant is way better than the store bought Wilton stuff, but my wife is a vegetarian, and won't eat marshmallows. We've thought about trying to make vegetarian fondant, but we haven't seen any great looking recipes/videos/products, etc.. We saw a recipe for a "hybrid" buttercream fondant, but we weren't sure how that would do, and wanted to know if anyone else has had any experience with that.
We've also thought about placing fondant strips on the iced cakes... meaning, after we put our "final" layer of icing on the first tier, we'd make zebra prints out of black fondant and place them on.. Is this done alot? Should we just try to do all icing, with decorative black icing (mind you, we're both new to cake baking)... Are there stencils for zebra print icing perhaps? I don't know, just would like some direction....
Also, for our sons cake we plan on using a mini 3D Bear mold and making it into a lion... only, our icing wouldn't stick to the mold sometimes... We think maybe it was the icing... it seemed kind of thick, and not "loose" like I've seen on Cake Boss or some videos with Sandy Sheppard..
In addition, if possible, if anyone else has an awesome buttercream icing recipe they'd like to point me to, it would be very appreciated.
Thanks in advance for any input and/or guidance you can give.
Can't answer your questions about vegetarian fondant, but as far as sticking fondant decorations to buttercream, yes, lots of people do that and it works great. I usually dab just a tiny bit of water on the back of the fondant decor to help it stick.
If your icing seems too thick, just add more liquid until it's the consistancy you want. This is the icing recipe I usually use, only I use half butter/half shortening: http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Ricks-Special-Buttercream-Frosting/Detail.aspx
This is a good one, too: http://cakecentral.com/recipes/6992/indydebis-crisco-based-buttercream-icing
I am not sure if you're wife would eat fish, but certified kosher marshmallows contain fish product, and no meat product.
I just made a jungle cake covered in buttercream and did fondant for the tops of each layer and hand painted. Look in my pics you can see it there if you have questions email me email@example.com good luck!