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Get really smooth, fondant-like buttercream?

post #1 of 38
Thread Starter 

I know it's been asked a million times, but I must be doing something wrong because I still can't get it! I've read all the threads on the Melvira method and the Viva method. I've watched Jessica Harris' Craftsy class and have enrolled and watched the SugarEd tutorial ... I'm not sure what to try next.

 

With the Viva method, we don't have Viva paper towels like the ones in the U.S. and the best substitute I can find pulls the BC off with it.

 

I tried the Melvira method last night with the high density foam roller (6") and it wasn't working either. When I used it directly on the cake it pulled the icing off. When I used it over a paper towel or parchment paper they pulled the icing off.

 

Here is a pic of my best effort to date, but as you can see I still have a ways to go. Any suggestions would be very much appreciated.

 

post #2 of 38
Try going over the final coat with a bench scraper dipped in very hot water. It works best if your cake is a little cold. Smoothing buttercream takes me forever!
post #3 of 38

lol, beauty is in the eye of the beholder!  i hear you!  and yet I've only tried it once so far and would have Loved for my attempt to look like yours as is now! ;-D

 

i'm making a halloween cake just to try again!

post #4 of 38
Thread Starter 
I did that today. I had a put off hit water on the stove that I kept dipping my bench scraper into maybe I'm pushing too hard with the bench scraper because I keep getting vertical lines. Thanks for the suggestion. I'll keep at it.
post #5 of 38

Bench scraper might be all you need. That Melvira method and the viva towel were pretty famous two to three years ago. People do it differently now.

 

Here's some links that might help you. This girl, Natalie, is amazing, even making stripes with buttercream.

 

http://sweetnessandbite.com/2013/10/perfect-buttercream-stripes-part-one/

 

Also, whatever Jessica Harris does with ganache, many people do with buttercream. Jessica Harris got it from Jeff Arnett, who always used buttercream.

 

http://sugarsweetcakesandtreats.blogspot.com/2010/05/covering-cake-in-ganache.html

 

http://cakecentral.com/a/upside-down-icing-technique-for-perfectly-smooth-icing

post #6 of 38

the method where you put a board on bottom & top of cake then put the icing in between has failed me.  The cardboards do not have perfectly smooth edges so the spatula jumps in and out and makes an uglier side then when I freehand it.

 

So what can be used instead?

~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman 
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~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman 
Flowers
(3 photos)
Fishing / Hunting
(12 photos)
Halloween
(4 photos)
Reply
post #7 of 38

Drumboards? I think you have cardboard right next to the cake, so that becomes the bottom of the cake, but you use drumboards or thicker boards, with smooth edges, to do the smoothing.

 

http://www.notquitenigella.com/2010/11/04/how-to-make-a-two-tier-wedding-cake-with-faye-cahill/

post #8 of 38

Also, some people have acrylic boards cut to half an inch bigger than their cakes, in pairs.

 

http://www.facebook.com/notes/torta-couture-cakes/how-to-ganache-a-cake-my-way/517220834972659

 

They're also selling them, although not cut to size. You have to make sure your cake is half an inch smaller.

 

http://www.walmart.com/ip/26681810?wmlspartner=wlpa&selectedSellerId=3&adid=22222222227018920471&wl0=&wl1=g&wl2=c&wl3=27860864796&wl4=&wl5=pla&wl6=53519974716&veh=sem

post #9 of 38
Maybe you could adjust your buttercream recipe...
Plank.
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Plank.
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post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by imagenthatnj View Post
 

Also, some people have acrylic boards cut to half an inch bigger than their cakes, in pairs.

 

clear acrylic rounds with polished edges.....perfect for the icing application shown above.....

unfortunately for me, they are only sold overseas. they do look like what was used in the tutorial that gave such a perfect finish.

 

I could order and try out the cake drums.  pretty expensive for something that won't hold up well.

~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman 
Flowers
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Fishing / Hunting
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Halloween
(4 photos)
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~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman 
Flowers
(3 photos)
Fishing / Hunting
(12 photos)
Halloween
(4 photos)
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post #11 of 38

and if the acrylic rounds work so well,  couldn't you get the same perfection in a square cake with acrylic squares?

~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman 
Flowers
(3 photos)
Fishing / Hunting
(12 photos)
Halloween
(4 photos)
Reply
~~We are living in a world today where lemonade is made from artificial flavors and furniture polish is made from real lemons. ~Alfred E. Newman 
Flowers
(3 photos)
Fishing / Hunting
(12 photos)
Halloween
(4 photos)
Reply
post #12 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by MustangMollie View Post

I did that today. I had a put off hit water on the stove that I kept dipping my bench scraper into maybe I'm pushing too hard with the bench scraper because I keep getting vertical lines. Thanks for the suggestion. I'll keep at it.

Are you using a cardboard cake round under cake? If so, the tiny ridges cause tiny bumps which make lines. Or do you mean 2 or 3 from where you start & stop smoothing?

I use a cardboard round for my cakes a 6" cake gets a 6" round. Then, I place that on a smooth surface (Masonic, acrylic round, bottom of cake pan) 6" cake on 8".

www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
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www.VeryDeliciousDesserts.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Delicious-Desserts/207874222593145

 

It's never "just cake!"

 

You may get a cake for $way to little but you won't get this cake!

Animal
(4 photos)
 
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post #13 of 38
post #14 of 38
Thread Starter 
What is the difference between a cake board and a drum board? I don't use the cardboard cake boards, I use the harder and thicker ones that are covered in foul (made of wood maybe?).

I definitely get ridges in the bc were I stop and start with the scraper, but around the edges of the cake board the foil is folded under so the edges of the board aren't smooth. This creates ridges too.
post #15 of 38
Thread Starter 
Hmmm ... BrandisBaked, I just read the other thread about smoothing buttercream, and it looks like you're right! It looks lie meringue buttercreams are harder to smooth. What a bummer. Thanks for your insight.
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