I've been practicing rolling out fondant and covering cakes with The Mat using some dummies. First I used Wilton fondant. I rolled it out a bit thicker than normal as I read this might help prevent tearing at the sharp edges of dummies and hide any imperfections on the dummies. Worked fine. I tried rolling it out a little thinner, and it worked even better. BTW, these have been round dummies. Loving The Mat at this point.
Next, I tried using Satin Ice fondant on a square. Smoothing out the fondant and getting perfect edges was wonderful! However, I got a lot of little holes. I read a thread on here from someone who had a similar problem and people advised her that she might not have kneaded it enough and maybe to even microwave it a bit before kneading. I microwaved my Satin Ice a little, then kneaded and kneaded and kneaded. Much better! Not perfect, but much better. Still loving how nicely the Satin Ice lays down on the cake - my edges come out perfect!
Here's where the real problem comes. My next attempt is with Satin Ice and The Mat and a round. I'm getting better at kneading more and getting less holes. BUT, now I'm getting large dents in the fondant! I've covered an 8" round TWICE now with the same problem. I didn't have the dents with the Wilton and the Mat. I think with Satin Ice being so much softer, it's more sensitive to The Mat bending. Does this make any sense? When I pick up The Mat and lay it on the round, the way it lays on the round is different then the way it lays on the square. My theory is that The Mat is leaving dents. Anyone else agree or have any other theories? If this is the case, how do I fix it? I know others love The Mat and I love it too and don't want to give up on it. I know the problem is me, but I just am not sure what exactly I'm doing wrong. Help!!
Boy, I don't know how to help you out. I don't have The Mat but do use a length of clear plastic from my fabric store every now and again but have never had the problem you described. The only possibility is that you may be leaning on the roller when you first start out then letting up on the pressure as you work your way around the piece of fondant. Can you use a smoother on the fondant when it's still on The Mat - before you place it on the dummy? This might help you discover any unevenly rolled places. Then the only other thing I can think of is that you may be putting an uneven coating of (whatever) on your dummy before putting the fondant on. In other words some spots may have moisture on it while others are bare - the bare spots would naturally travel downward a little, creating uneven places in the finish.
I have The Mat and I've used it with Satin Ice for several cakes and haven't had too many issues with it. Do you have a picture of the dents you are describing? I had a problem a while back with my fondant having some long wave dents and they were from The Mat not being perfectly flat when I unrolled it. I needed to be more careful each time I roll it up to put it away that the plastic sheets don't form waves as they are being rolled up together. After a few times of being careful rolling The Mat sheets the waves disappeared. I hope this is helpful!
I recently bought The Mat too and decorated my first cake in it, using Satin Ice. I did experience a little bit of tearing with my second tier but nothing that a thicker layer of fondant couldn't fix. I remember kneading in a bit of shortening for both tiers before rolling it though, and keeping it relatively thick. My cake ended up being really smooth with no tears and dents. Is your mat dented? Is it both the sheets or just one of them?
I've checked my mats and neither are dented. I actually bought them 3 months ago and haven't had to use them, so this is the first time I've even taken them out of the tube. My first round of "trials" was with Wilton fondant and I did not have these problems with the dents. I've attached a few pictures so everyone can see what I'm talking about. Also, you can see in the pics that there's a square underneath. I did not have these dents with the square either using the Satin Ice. It's the rounds using Satin Ice I'm having issues with. I did put shortening on my hands when they started to stick as I was kneading so some shortening got added to the Satin Ice before I rolled it out. DeniseNH - I suppose it's a possibility that I might be leaning on it as I lay the mat down on the round. I'm not 100% sure as I didn't pay close attention to this, but the side furthest away from me might've been the smoothest. I want to get this right, but I just really wanted to get as many opinions as possible before I wasted any more fondant
If it's fine on the square cakes, then do you think that's something's not right with the round cakes themselves? Those are pretty huge dents If they're on the fondant before you even put them on the cake, is it on both sides of the fondant? If not then maybe you could try flipping the fondant over to get the dents underneath.
I don't think it's the rounds themselves because 1. they're new also and are pretty much in perfect shape and 2. even if it had imperfections I'm not noticing, they can't be that significant as they didn't show through the Wilton fondant.
I'm fairly certain the dents weren't on the fondant before I put them on the cake. However, I only inspected the top side before I picked it up to place on the round. I did not think to inspect the bottom side - the side that was against the table. And it's that bottom side that would end up on top after placing it on the cake. Thank you cakezilla91 for bringing that up. If that's the case though, I don't understand how that could be happening and why it would only be happening with the Satin Ice fondant and only on the round.
Thank you so much for the feedback. More would definitely be welcome! I plan on practicing some more, but I don't want to just keep repeating the same mistake. I need to do something different so I'm not just wasting my fondant and money I wish I had videotaped myself doing the whole process so maybe I could spot something I was doing wrong that I can't think of!
You're welcome! And yes, it is pretty weird that it only happens with Satin Ice. I haven't really experimented with other fondants much, and in my experience MMF is very soft and tears pretty easy - could be something I'm doing wrong though. Have you tried MMF? If you have the same problem with denting it could be that Satin Ice is relatively softer and more vulnerable to dents compared to Wilton, which I heard is not as soft. It's most likely the fondant though, because when I got The MAT in the mail, there were a lot of really small dents and I was worried, but the end result was pretty smooth.
I hope turning the fondant around helps if you ever decide to try that out
Thank you again I have tried making MMF, but it was a while ago so I haven't tried it with The Mat. Is that what you're using with your Mat? If not, what brand are you using? Did you do anything special to condition your Mat before using it? I only followed the directions it came with: sprayed a light layer of nonstick cooking spray on the shiny sides then wiped clean. I think I read somewhere that people were soaking their Mats in water or maybe soapy water before their first use, but I can't remember where I read that. That might've also been with the older Mats. Mine says that this current version is a little thicker than before. I will try again soon - maybe this weekend. I will definitely check the bottom side after rolling it out!
I got a dent right across the top of my 7" cake a couple of weeks ago when I used the Mat to roll out Fondant. There was nothing wrong with the Fondant. It turned out to be some long dent on the Mat. I tried rolling over the dent on the Mat to smoothen it out, but that didn't change anything. Instead once I removed the top half of the Mat, I had to roll over the Fondant to get rid of the dent, right before I spread it over the cake. That worked great and I got no dent at all.
I used the Mat again last weekend and I did notice though, the dent was no longer showing up on the Fondant. It just disappeared. I think it's a temporary problem with the Mat. At least I hope it's temporary...
Thank you for responding Bomatebaker! I was hoping someone had run across the same problem. I mean, I'm sorry you had the problem , but it's nice to hear that someone else had the same issue and it's been resolved, hopefully
I tried using MMF a while ago when I was making a couple practice cakes, but gave up on it after realizing how much work goes into it (I work and study full time). I bought The MAT a month ago and have been using Satin Ice with it only. I did spray nonstick cooking spray but that was only the first time before using it. After that I don't condition it with anything. I just knead a little shortening and confectioners sugar into the fondant because it becomes sticky after mixing in colours. If all else fails you could always write to SweetWise themselves and ask for some advice