I love baking quirky cakes, and I make all my fondant in my kitchen. Using store-bought fondant may be easier, but it’s more expensive, and it tastes, well, BLAH. Homemade fondant is delicious and pretty easy to make en-mass once you get the hang of it.
There are two ways to go about making the fondant. You can use fresh marshmallows or stale marshmallows (they’re kind of tough and hard). Fresh marshmallows are less likely to get burnt and easier to turn into fondant, BUT the fondant they produce can tear more easily. Stale marshmallows are more likely to burn (which can mean you have to throw the whole batch out, depending on the color you’re going for), but the resulting fondant is easier to work with.
That being said, ALWAYS use brand-name marshmallows. Yup, the more expensive ones just work better. Store brand is a no-no unless you’ve got mad skills, in which case, write to me and let me know how you did it! (Usually one bag of powdered sugar and one of marshmallows is fine for a cake, but I always have at least three of each on hand in case something goes wrong! You can always return what you don’t use—or bake extra!)
You’ll want to put the entire bag of marshmallows in a Crisco-coated microwavable bowl and, on a regular setting, microwave them for 30 seconds. Stir. Repeat the process until the marshmallows are one, big, gooey mass. Then, coat your hands with Crisco and mix the marshmallows with powdered sugar. I like to use brand name powdered sugar, but it’s less important than with the marshmallows. BE CAREFUL because you can burn yourself pretty nastily on the hot marshmallows, BUT wait too long and the marshmallows will set, and you’ll have to microwave them all over again. It’s a fine line!
Once the marshmallows can’t take anymore powdered sugar, you have your fondant. Wipe your counter clean and then coat it with Crisco. Recoat your hands with Crisco. There’s a LOT of Crisco going on here. Using a rolling pin (coated with Crisco) or a wine bottle (also coated with Crisco), roll out the fondant until it’s the size of the dessert you want to cover. Don’t let the fondant get too thin or it will rip. And try not to make it too thick or your guests will be chewing huge gobs of fondant!
Crumb coat your dessert with cream cheese frosting and put it in the fridge for ~5 minutes. I like to buy the frosting in the can. Homemade frosting is great, but the canned frosting is actually less expensive and holds the fondant better. Roll the fondant around the rolling pin/wine bottle to get it off the table, and then drape it over your dessert. Use kitchen scissors (NOT a knife) to cut off the excess fondant. Smooth fondant, and TAH-DAH! your dessert is ready to be colored.
If you have an airbrush (go you!) just follow the directions on the packaging. If you don’t have an airbrush, you can mix food coloring with vodka to paint the cake various shades of colors. (The vodka evaporates, don’t worry!) All it takes is a regular paintbrush—but one that hasn’t been used for anything else.
Have fun, and message me with questions!
Photo Credit: Lance Anderson