Afternoon Baker Posted 14 Apr 2013 , 9:12am
post #1 of

I am new to using gumpaste and experimenting with flowers. I live in Sydney, and I am not sure why my gumpaste flowers are not hardening how they are meant to:

 

1) The gumpaste takes ages to dry 

2) When dried, it then starts to slowly soften again..

 

What am I doing wrong????

 

Thanks

9 replies
Chellescakes Posted 14 Apr 2013 , 9:47am
post #2 of

What kind of flowerpaste are you using ? 

How do you store your flowers ?

What is the humidity like where you are at the moment ?

Afternoon Baker Posted 14 Apr 2013 , 11:09am
post #3 of

AHello chellescakes! I live in Sydney and am using Cake Art Moulding paste. I dry the flowers in the oven with the light on and then once they are dried I leave them out (I leave the flowers out I plan to use in the next day or two) I am using food colour gels (Wilton) to colour the flowers after they dry. The flowers harden then become like the consistency of stale chewing gum!

Chellescakes Posted 14 Apr 2013 , 8:38pm
post #4 of

There is your problem , Cake art is terrible stuff , I made my first flowers out of it and they nearly always flop. 

 

I make my own paste or I use Menina or the two mixed together. 

 

To make your own , I use one egg white ( a small one ) I then add sifted icing sugar mix ( I don't bother with pure as I find that humidity makes it too difficult to work with) . I add the sugar spoonful by spoonful using an electric mixer , until the mix is at stiff peak and when you touch it your finger should come away clean. 

 

Then add four level teaspoons of tylose powder ( at this stage it will go a little crumbly ) . Then get two level teaspoons of Copha or Frymaster and knead it through the paste until it is nice and smooth and elastic. 

 

I use a little extra Copha ( just a very small amount on my hands) to coat the outside of the paste ball. Wrap in gladwrap , pop it in a freezer bag and in a ziplock . I find it works better if you fridge it overnight. It is fine out of the fridge for a week or so , I keep the extra I don't need in the freezer , not the fridge. 

maybenot Posted 14 Apr 2013 , 11:22pm
post #5 of
Quote:
Originally Posted by Afternoon Baker 

Hello chellescakes! I live in Sydney and am using Cake Art Moulding paste. I dry the flowers in the oven with the light on and then once they are dried I leave them out (I leave the flowers out I plan to use in the next day or two) I am using food colour gels (Wilton) to colour the flowers after they dry. The flowers harden then become like the consistency of stale chewing gum!

 

I have no experience with Cake Art paste, but I think your main problem is coloring the dried flowers with gels.  I really believe that the flowers are softening mainly because of the application of a glycerin based, moist medium.

 

Gum paste flowers are generally colored using dry (petal) dusts and then dipped in alcohol based thinned confectioner's glaze and/or briefly steamed to set the color.  Accents like dots or lines can be done with gels or food markers, but if coloring large areas, the dry dusts are the way to go.

 

I'm sure that if you change the way that you color your flowers, you'll have better luck.

sweettooth101 Posted 15 Apr 2013 , 12:01am
post #6 of

I use wilton gel colors all the time but added to the gumpaste for an all over color and than highlight with petal dust. There are times when I have worked with only white paste and used dust to color.As maybenot said that the gels might be the problem.

Chellescakes gumpaste recipe is similar to what I use, for every one heaped cup of icing sugar I use 2 teaspoons of tylose.

Afternoon Baker Posted 15 Apr 2013 , 3:50am
post #7 of

Thanks so much guys! I suspected it was the gels as it softened after I applied them and hardened again under the oven light! I am a newbie and chosen to learn by trial and error. I don't have time for too many classes..

 

However, I am considering doing a Sugar flower course..just can't seem to find any that are based in Sydney.

 

Does anybody know of decent sugar flower classes or teachers in Sydney?

Chellescakes Posted 15 Apr 2013 , 4:30am
post #8 of

You might like to contact your nearest branch of the Guild . They should be able to point you in the right direction for a teacher . 

http://www.cakedecoratorsguildnsw.org.au/  

 

I will still maintain that no matter what you do with Cake art carp it will soften , it is just not a good product. 

Afternoon Baker Posted 15 Apr 2013 , 4:35am
post #9 of

Thanks again! I will try the Guild 

theartofsugar Posted 15 Apr 2013 , 12:09pm

Also you should check out wholesalesugarflowers.com.  Although I love making my own Gumpaste Flowers, their prices are great and saves an enormous amount of time.  Plus the flowers are gorgeous!

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