Icing Sugar Versus Shortening!

Baking By smoothcakes75 Updated 31 Jul 2010 , 6:10am by smoothcakes75

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smoothcakes75 Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 5:21pm
post #1 of 13

Icing sugar or shortening for rolling the fondant onto??? I've found that icing sugar sometimes dries out the fondant, especially if you have to roll it out quite large, and you have to take the time to keep lifting it over and over and adding more icing sugar.... And I've found that with shortening, sometimes it's hard to pull the fondant from the table, and it stretches as you pull it! Anyone have any advice or tips?

12 replies
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sweetflowers Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 5:34pm
post #2 of 13

It's personal preference. I use the icing sugar, very sparingly. When I do use the shortening, I use it on a vinyl mat, not directly on my table. I make sure it's a very thin layer so the fondant doesn't stick and use the vinyl to lift the fondant onto the cake.

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mamawrobin Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 5:43pm
post #3 of 13

I use Michele Foster's fondant and it demands the use of cornstarch to perform properly thumbs_up.gif

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erichazann Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 5:56pm
post #4 of 13

I think it depends on the fondant you are using... dryer fondant like Wilton needs shortening, greasier like Fondarific needs sugar/cornstarch. If you make your own, then it's your call if it's dryer or greasier.

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cathie_shinnick Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 5:57pm
post #5 of 13

I apply a very very thin layer of shortning to the counter then sprinkle sone cornstarch and roll on that. It wont get sticky because its not sugar and it wont stick ..if for some reason it does start to stick....just sprinkle a little more cornstarch. icon_smile.gif hope this helps

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Tracy7953 Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 6:02pm
post #6 of 13

I prefer cornstarch.

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MyDiwa Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 6:34pm
post #7 of 13

Just to show you that it really comes down to what works for each individual, preferences, environment, work surface etc, I'll throw a spanner in the works!

I actually use both shortening and cornstarch. I use shortening to knead my fondant prior to rolling it out. Then if it's greasy enough on the under side i'll sprinkle a very small amount of cornstarch in a separate area where I'm going to roll out. If not, I'll put a layer of shortening over the entire area I think the fondant will spread to, then very sparingly sprinkle some cornstarch on a small area in the middle where my fondant will sit as I begin rolling out. I discovered this by mistake after watching a Planet Cakes tutorial on youtube and have been doing it ever since because I've found I'm able to roll out my fondant quicker and thinner.

So you'll have to juts try out all the suggestions made on here till you find your own groove.

Good luck!

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BlakesCakes Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 8:23pm
post #8 of 13

I roll all pre-made fondants (I don't make MMF or MFF)--including Fondarific/Duff's Fondant on a smear of crisco shortening on a piece of vinyl.

I never have ANY problems with it sticking, no problems picking it up, no problems whatsoever. I also have no powder to clean up from my kitchen or my completed cake.

The only things I roll on cornstarch are modeling chocolate and Mexican paste.


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smoothcakes75 Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 10:36pm
post #9 of 13

Thanks everyone for all your comments! I just finished covering my middle and top layer cakes with fondant. It's Satin Ice - and both times it rolled out nice and smooth (with shortening underneath), then when I put it over the cake(s), the fondant covering the corners/edges looked dry, so I had to pat some shortening to hide it. It didn't look dry when I rolled it out! Is that normal? So now my cakes are looking a little shiny because of the shortening hiding the flaws!! Anyone out there use Satin Ice? See, I'm worried about my next cake to cover, it's the biggest and I'm sure I'll have the same problem! (11x11x5)

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BlakesCakes Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 11:17pm
post #10 of 13

When you roll fondant, you're creating friction & heat on the surface.

When you put the rolled out fondant on the cake, if that top surface stretches a lot at the top edge, it will "crack" a bit and reveal the "inside" of the fondant.

It helps to:
Work quickly and cover the rolled out piece with saran, or another plastic material, if it's going to take you awhile to get it onto the cake.

As soon as it's on the cake, smooth the top and upper edge so that the sides don't pull down on it while you're smoothing those. If the weight of the side fondant is allowed to continue to pull at the upper edge, the cracking will be worse.

Even doing this, if it's very dry when I'm covering a cake, I still may need to massage the upper edge with some crisco, but never so much that it's obvious after I'm finished.


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mookamoo Posted 30 Jul 2010 , 11:50pm
post #11 of 13

I use corn starch with satin ice...I had that problem with icing sugar too...Corn starch works better for me

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BlakesCakes Posted 31 Jul 2010 , 12:13am
post #12 of 13

I found this on the Satin Fine Foods website--I've added the bold italics (http://satinfinefoods.com/how_info.htm).

"When kneading and rolling Satin Ice we prefer to do so on a smooth surface which has been smeared with a film coating of shortening. This prevents the icing from sticking to the rolling pin or work surface, and will help in keeping the icing moist. It is also preferred when working with chocolate or colored product."

Tons and tons of great videos and info on the site, too!


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smoothcakes75 Posted 31 Jul 2010 , 6:10am
post #13 of 13

Thanks for the website - I never even thought of looking it up! (Thanks for the tips too!)

Thanks everyone - I love this website and all the information people share with each other.

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