Hi, I was asked by a local gourmet kitchen supply store to teach a class on decorating with fondant. Ages 9-13 and a separate class ages 14-19. They already had planned what was going to happen in the class. Each class is 1 1/2 hrs long. Starting out making our own MMF, crumb coating an 8" cake and covering in fondant. Then decorating a monster cupcake from Hello cupcake and sculpting a fondant decoration to top a different cupcake. I just don't see how I can get all the kids to make their own fondant cover the cake, decorate it and decorate two different cupcakes in 1 1/2 hrs! They will have to color the fondant too. Plus I think the fondant needs to settle overnight. What do you think? Thanks for your help, any tips would be great as well.
Honestly, for the younger group, I would skip the whole making the fondant part. First off, you have to heat marshmallows for that, and we are talking hot sugary syrupy stuff. Not sure you want a whole class of 9-13 year olds doing that.
Secondly, kids just want to play more than anything. They'd have fun coloring the fondant, because then they could pick their colors, plus it's a lot like play dough. They want to get their hands in and do right away.
Wilton factors in at least 45 mins in their classes (usually geared towards adults) for covering the cake in fondant. Some can get it done in shorter amounts of times, but it does still take more than 10 mins. You are going to have to help the youngest of the group roll out a piece of fondant that is between 12 and 16 inches depend on if the cake is two layers of one.
I would talk to the ones that have come up with the class list. I'd suggest giving the younger group buttercream to ice the cakes with (this will still take time) or provide them with already iced/fondanted cakes. They can put the fondant decorations on top of that.
With the older group, I think I'd show how to make the fondant, give them directions for it, but already have fondant ready for them to use. They could get more done, and have more arm strength in general to roll out the fondant with.
Are they planning on decorating the fondant cake or just the cupcakes? I'd suggest one or the other. An hour and a half is not a lot of time at all. It sounds like it, but really you have to play for only about 45 mins of stuff, because it almost always takes longer than you think it would.
If you have some free time, I'd set a timer, make a batch of MMF, color it, cover and decorate a cake (cake pan or dummy) with it. Then I'd at least make the fondant toppers for the cupcakes and see how long it takes you to do it. How ever long it takes you I would at least double that for what it would take the kids, and keep in mind it will probably take longer, because you'll have to help some of them, and there is only one you.
Wow, thanks for your help. They want to decorate the cakes and cupcakes! I will go talk to them today and see what they think
If they focus is on the decorating, I'd focus on that and give them the supplies to do that. They can easily by premade fondant, so I'm not sure the lesson on how to make it is important. Even in the Wilton classes we don't teach how to make the fondant, just how to use it.
You could also suggest maybe they'd break it up in to two different classes, cupcakes one time and a cake the next?
I think TexasSugar has some awesome ideas! I agree, I wouldn't bother teaching 'how' to make the fondant, I don't think they'd be interested in that, and they can always use pre-made commercial fondant. Also breaking it up into two classes, one for cakes and one for cupcakes, sounds better! Good Luck and have fun!
You could have them crumb coat cakes and while they're waiting for the buttercream to crust you could do a mini-demo (maybe make 1/4 batch so kneading won't take so long) of how to make MMF - give out recipe if they want to do it at home. Then have MMF or other fondant ready for them to move on to cake covering, decorating, etc.
Thanks for everyone's help! I am nervous but excited, hopefully everything will go well!
Good luck. Just have fun, and they will have fun.