Want To Offer Fondant Covered Cakes But That Darn Bulge

Decorating By Kiddiekakes Updated 27 Mar 2012 , 1:49pm by srkmilklady

Kiddiekakes Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 5:24pm
post #1 of 15

I am getting more requests for fondant covered cakes but everytime I make a cake and try and cover it with fondant....crumb coat/ganache etc...the darn cake comes out lumpy or bulges.I just don't know how to eliminate this.The layers lump out from the sides....unless I hand cut each layer so the edges are sharp I don't know how to keep the ring from showing...

Please..If anyone can help....

14 replies
The_Sugar_Fairy Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 5:44pm
post #2 of 15

Some things I've learned...

1. Use a very thick dam of buttercream (you can almost shape the bc in your hand - that's how thick.... but not so thick that it won't come out of the piping bag). Then put in your filling.
2. Wrap in saran wrap and let it settle overnight (about 12 hours). Sometimes I even use a heavy tile or book on top.
3. Trim the edges before covering in buttercream or ganache. Then cover in fondant.

If you've done all of that though already, I'm not sure of the answer.

Apti Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 7:44pm
post #3 of 15

Bulges are caused by a couple of things. The suggestions above by the Sugar Fairy are pretty much what I do. I'm a 2 year hobby baker and I was unable to get a decent amount of filling without getting a bulge UNTIL I finally used SUPER-STIFF buttercream as my dam.

A combination of things may be what you need. You can try one, two, or all three of the suggestions provided:

1. Make super-stiff buttercream. I take out about 2 cups of my medium buttercream, put in a bowl, and mix in powdered sugar by hand until it is so stiff it won't stir anymore. I put it in a piping bag with a coupler ONLY, no tip. Then I squeeze out the super-stiff BC using both hands in a death grip. I put my dam about 1/4" inside the outer edge.

2. Tort/dam/fill your tier. Let it set a couple of hours or overnight to "settle" on the counter. (Some people put in the fridge overnight.)

3. Purchase a CERAMIC floor tile, either 12x12" or 16x16", from Home Depot. Loosely cover your torted/dammed/filled tier with plastic wrap or parchment, lay the tile, smooth side against the cake, on top of the tier. Use a level to make SURE it IS level. Let settle a couple of hours or overnight.

If you do have any bulging after the steps above, scrape off the bulge, then apply crumb coat.

Claire138 Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 7:46pm
post #4 of 15

Are you using one pan or two? if you are using one and cutting it in half you have to make sure it's lined up properly when putting the top half on. same if using 2 pans, and definitely make sure they are the same size. I can not praise MagicLine high enough for their wonderful pans. The cakes come out perfectly, if you haven't invested in them then do so as soon as you can. I wish I had done so earlier, would have save me so much time and aggravation.
Another thing is that if you have a few lumps and even a slight bulge you can cover those with decorations.
My cakes are in no way perfect but with time you get the feel of the ganache or bc (I prefer ganache) and fondant and learn how to use them just by using them if you know what I mean. Can you make practice cakes for family? or close friends? or a charity? that way you can get lots of experience until you feel ready to charge.

KoryAK Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 10:29pm
post #5 of 15

Chill your cake before covering it.

MacsMom Posted 25 Mar 2012 , 11:40pm
post #6 of 15

Apti has rthe best advice. If I need a perfectly smooth cake (no embellishment that I could use the hide flaws), I fill my cakes then place a heavy book on top for awhile before the crumb coat. If I end up with a bubble - usually caused from not smoothing top to bottom, trapping air - then I use a needle to pop it. Hold the needle at an angle going upwards from the bottom of the air bubble and smooth the air out with your fondant smoother.

DeniseNH Posted 26 Mar 2012 , 12:05am
post #7 of 15

I saw one decorator on U-Tube place her dam - in from the edge about a half inch - then fill and when they pressed down on the cake to squeeze out any air, the dam fills in the area but doesn't squish out the sides.

srkmilklady Posted 26 Mar 2012 , 4:56pm
post #8 of 15

For those of you that like to use IMBC or SMBC, as they are both very soft, how do you address the firming up of the buttercream for the dam? Or do you use a shortening based buttercream just for the dam? My family has told me that they prefer the taste of the IMBC, but I'm not sure now how to dam my filling? icon_confused.gif

srkmilklady Posted 27 Mar 2012 , 5:13am
post #9 of 15

Anybody have an answer to the IMBC or SMBC question I posted?

Claire138 Posted 27 Mar 2012 , 5:18am
post #10 of 15
KoryAK Posted 27 Mar 2012 , 5:52am
post #11 of 15

Weird I answered before, but I guess it didn't post...

IMBC/SMBC doesn't crust but it firms up even harder than that in the fridge. Chill your cakes before adding fondant and it will be glorious. After covering/decorating, you can bring back to room temp and it will be fine.

srkmilklady Posted 27 Mar 2012 , 6:44am
post #12 of 15
Originally Posted by KoryAK

IMBC/SMBC doesn't crust but it firms up even harder than that in the fridge. Chill your cakes before adding fondant and it will be glorious. After covering/decorating, you can bring back to room temp and it will be fine.

So are you saying to still use the IMBC to make a dam then put my filling in, but then refrigerate the cake so the icing will harden up? Then when I bring it back to room temp, it won't soften up and try to bulge through the fondant?

AnnieCahill Posted 27 Mar 2012 , 12:32pm
post #13 of 15

The dam gets rock hard in the fridge. I put my dammed cake in the fridge for about 15 minutes before I fill it. Sometimes I don't even dam. But you need to put the dam about 1/4 inch in from the edge so it's not sitting right on the edge of the cake. I have never had any issues with bulging using IMBC. And yes, even after coming to room temperature it's fine.


SweetTzippy Posted 27 Mar 2012 , 1:11pm
post #14 of 15

I solved the problem of bulges/air bubbles by using a thicker layer of fondant, the thicker the best result.

srkmilklady Posted 27 Mar 2012 , 1:49pm
post #15 of 15

Thank you all for the tips! icon_biggrin.gif

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