Hi all - I'm at the 'learning by experimenting when I make cakes for friends and family' stage, and have a question about fondant decorations which I'm going to use for the first time on my next cake. I've got the basics from websites and you tube, including how to make a bow, and that this is better done ahead of time so it can dry. But what about smaller things like letter cut outs (I want to do a big number one for the side of the cake, and the child's name for the cake board) and beads (I'm going to do fondant beads around the bottom of the cake and since I don't have a mold yet, I will be doing them by hand!! Getting them evenly sized will be tricky but I'm going to try weighing each piece - as you can imagine, this will take a while so would be better done a day or two before I actually decorate the cake!). Although it would be easier timewise to do them before hand, I can see that these smaller bits are more likely to be eaten, and thus would be unpleasant if hard and dry (where as the bow being a centre piece would likely be removed before the cake is cut).
Oh and last question, is there anything other than tylose that I can add to the fondant to help harden it for the bow? (I'm actually hoping there's something I'm likely to already have, like maybe cornflour?? Money is tight . . . cakes on a budget!)
(I'm a bit excited - I'm making my own fondant with Michelle Foster's recipe and the first batch turned out awesome. I also got some fairly decent butter cream done for my trial batch. Now to get the rolled fondant on the cake and looking okay-ish).
Thanks in advance (I'm trying to google my questions before posting them here)
For getting your beads the same size (depending on how mig you want them you could use the wide end of a piping tip to cut out circles to roll by hand or if you dont ave one of those roll out a sausage making sure it is uniform thickness and then using a knife to cut off even sized pieces. would be faster than weighing them.
You can cut out small fondant decorations, put them on a piece of waxed paper on a cookie sheet, then freeze them until you need them. They'll soften up quickly when you take them out of the freezer, though, so you have to work fast to get them on the cake or they'll stretch out.
I understand being tight on money! Use a coupon to buy the tylose at Joann's or michaels, and it's only a couple of dollars. However, if you make it well ahead of time and it can dry completely, you don't need tylose. Just don't make it too thin.
Yes cornstarch will work, but not as fast as Tylose. Do as much fondant decoration as you can ahead of time so right before it's just a matter of placing them on. Saves much stress!