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Learn to cowl a cake with fondant utilizing my favorite method – the upside-down wrap technique. If you happen to’ve ever struggled to cowl a cake with fondant the normal manner – that is the right submit for you! Full step-by-step tutorial displaying easy methods to wrap a cake with fondant to attain sharp edges, and easy sides!
Reading: How to cover a cake with fondant
If you happen to’d requested me after I began this weblog, “what is the one thing you will never do a cake decorating tutorial on?” I wouldn’t have hesitated – my reply can be “showing how to cover a cake with fondant!”
Fondant and I’ve points. Like severe, private points. For years, fondant hated me. Hated me. I don’t know what I ever did to it to make it really feel that manner, but it surely did. So there it’s.
Each time I’d attempt to put fondant on a cake, one thing would go flawed. The fondant can be too dry. It will be too smooth and sticky. There can be air bubbles. Holes. It will stretch. It will tear. There can be tears (my tears, due to the tears). And that’s simply on spherical desserts, don’t even get me began on sq. desserts!
I do know a few of my cake preferences make issues more durable on me. I really like sharp-edged desserts, and I really like tall desserts. Each of which might make it more durable to cowl a cake. The sharp edges can tear the fondant, and the peak of a cake can imply that earlier than you’ve completed easing out the pleats within the fondant and smoothing all of it the best way down the cake, the fondant can dry out and provide the dreaded ‘elephant skin’.
Positive, there are magnificent cake decorators on the market that may cowl a cake in 5 minutes flat with no rips, no flaws and no swear phrases. I don’t know whether or not they’re magicians, ninjas, or simply purely good decorators, however all I do know is that I’m not considered one of them. There are most likely additionally numerous decorators who aren’t as ridiculously fussy as I’m and don’t lose sleep over minor imperfections, however I do. I care. An excessive amount of, most likely. Nevertheless it’s a personality flaw that I’m studying to dwell with.
I’ve by no means been to a cake class, I’ve learnt what I do know from the web, books and from a hell of numerous trial, error, dangerous language and meltdowns. And it’s that trial and error that led me to grasp that generally, you simply need to do issues in a different way.
And on this case, “different” for me is wrapping a cake in fondant as a substitute of protecting it in a single piece. Positive, you do find yourself with seams, however the best way I wrap my desserts now ends in seams which might be neat, clear and barely seen except you’re particularly searching for them. See?
Wrapping a cake has all the time been advisable as one of the best ways to cowl tall desserts with fondant (double/triple barrel desserts, and so forth.) however I’ve to confess that lately I wrap most of my desserts, no matter whether or not they’re tremendous tall or not. I discover it a lot much less aggravating, and now that I’ve executed it many instances, I all the time find yourself with a superb consequence. With just a little follow, possibly you’ll discover this system rather less aggravating too.
Once I was first experimenting with wrapping a cake with fondant, I adopted a number of on-line tutorials which had numerous methods of protecting the highest of the cake, however most of them concerned numerous messy trimming, which made the seams, effectively, messy. Or they wrapped the cake with cut-to-size items of fondant, which may stretch and/or distort, ending up too massive or too small, leaving both items that wanted trimming or unpleasant unfixable gaps. Frankly, I discovered all of it a bit onerous, a bit imperfect, and virtually as aggravating because the all-in-one technique.
Then sooner or later, whereas flipping a cake the wrong way up to ganache it, I assumed, why don’t I do this to cowl it with fondant?! And because it seems, it wasn’t a silly concept.
Take a look at this cake from my watercolour cake tutorial which I coated utilizing this system, if you happen to look shut sufficient you’ll see the seam across the prime edge, however on this cake, it was barely noticeable.
My fundamental course of for wrapping a cake in fondant is to cowl the highest first, then flip the cake the wrong way up and wrap one lengthy strip of fondant across the facet of the cake.
Having the cake the wrong way up signifies that you don’t need to trim the fondant in any respect alongside the highest seam (this may make extra sense when you learn the steps under) which in flip means your seam will likely be a lot neater and also you gained’t threat damaging your good sharp edge by having to trim it.
Utilizing this technique signifies that the highest seam of the fondant will likely be on prime of the cake, somewhat than across the facet. I favor it this manner because the seam is much less seen from the entrance. If, for the needs of your cake design, you wish to have the seam on the facet, you’ll have to skip step one of protecting the highest and flip your cake the wrong way up right away. Then comply with the steps to wrap and trim the cake. As soon as that’s executed, flip the cake again over then comply with the steps to cowl the highest, flip the cake over once more (onto one other waxed paper-covered board) and really fastidiously trim the surplus.
My Prime Three Keys to Neatly Protecting a Cake with Fondant
- ganache base. Having a properly ganached cake gives you a fantastic base for protecting it with fondant. With the intention to get that wonderful sharp edge in your fondant, you want a pointy edge in your ganache. Take a look at my ganache tutorial if you happen to want suggestions. This may be executed with buttercream however it’s a lot trickier. You have to to verify your buttercream is tremendous chilled and agency, after which work shortly to get the cake wrapped and smoothed earlier than the buttercream softens. If you happen to’re not assured, then I recommand go along with the ganache, or fill your cake layers with buttercream after which use ganache on the skin (better of each worlds!).
- Skinny fondant. The thinner you roll your fondant, the neater your prime seam will look. 3-4mm is good, thinner in case your fondant permits. If you happen to occur to have a rolling pin with spacers, that can make it an entire lot simpler to verify your fondant is evenly rolled. I exploit the orange spacers on my giant Wilton rolling pin.
- Neat cuts. Utilizing a pizza cutter to chop out your strip of fondant will assist maintain the underside edge clear (and this edge will likely be on the highest of your cake). Utilizing a brilliant sharp knife or scalpel to trim the seam on the again will make that seam neat too.
One instrument that most likely wants an additional point out earlier than we begin is the one you’ll use to roll your fondant round. I’ve a plastic rolling pin that’s good for this because it has flat somewhat than rounded ends (you’ll be able to see it within the first picture under). You should utilize a rolling pin with rounded ends (clearly you can’t use one which has handles) however you’ll need to be very cautious once you roll your fondant round it that you just line up the sting as you roll. You possibly can additionally use a chunk of PVC pipe (the sort used for consuming water plumbing) with the top lower straight.
So, whether or not you’re making a 12” tall triple barrel cake, or a 4” tall 4” cake, quickly you’ll know…
How to Wrap a Cake With Fondant
What You’ll Want
- Ganached cake – be sure to ganache your cake the day earlier than, and depart it in a single day to totally set.
- Fondant (if colouring your fondant, accomplish that the day earlier than and let the fondant relaxation in a single day) I used Satin Ice right here however have additionally executed this with Bakels Pettinice. Any good high quality fondant ought to work.
- Vodka or cake decorator’s alcohol
- Vegetable Shortening / Crisco – that is what I like to make use of to stay my fondant to ganache, see this submit for more information.
- Cornstarch or icing sugar/powdered sugar – for dusting. I favor to make use of cornstarch.
- Waxed paper – Edit: Waxed paper appears to be a bit trickier to search out now than it was after I began utilizing this system. If you happen to can’t discover waxed paper you should utilize common non-stick baking paper, simply understand that you’ll be able to’t tape it to the board (as a result of it’s non-stick) so you’ll need to be extra cautious once you flip the cake over, because the paper can slip. Utilizing a barely larger board to flip the cake onto will assist.
- Lengthy metallic ruler, pencil, craft knife or scalpel and slicing mat
- Rolling pin
- Plastic fondant smoother – I exploit a ‘smedger’, however any inflexible plastic fondant smoother will work.
- Versatile fondant smoothers – Learn to make your personal versatile fondant smoothers right here.
- Sharp knife and/or scalpel
- Pizza cutter/wheel
- Pin or acupuncture needle– For eradicating air bubbles
- Two setup boards – I exploit acrylic boards, however if you happen to don’t have these you should utilize masonite cake boards. One ought to be sq., if doable. Each boards have to be not less than 3-4” wider than your cake.
- Paintbrushes – I wish to have one flat brush for portray vodka or water onto the highest of the cake (you might use a pastry brush for this), one fluffy brush for dusting cornstarch, one giant flat one for un-sticking fondant (that’ll make sense when you learn that step within the tutorial) plus one toddler for portray vodka into seams that haven’t caught down.
- Grippy/non-slip mat -cut right into a circle barely smaller than the cake width.
You’ll additionally have to excuse any images under which might be just a little blurry, I mainly threw the digital camera at my mom and requested her to shortly take photographs as I used to be working, and we had some technical difficulties with the digital camera focusing. (I had the issues earlier than I threw the digital camera at her, so it wasn’t that… 😉 )
Begin by protecting a sq. cake board with waxed paper. Place the paper waxed facet down on the bench, put the board on prime and tape alongside one edge. Pull tightly and tape on the alternative edge. Then tape alongside the opposite two edges, once more pulling tightly. The fondant on the highest of your cake will likely be on this paper, so the smoother it’s, the smoother your fondant will likely be.
If you happen to can’t discover waxed paper, you then’ll simply place down a chunk of non-stick baking paper roughly the identical measurement because the board. It gained’t stick if you happen to attempt to tape it, so simply pop it on prime of the board.
Now you’ll want to chop out an oblong template for the fondant you’ll wrap across the cake.
I like to make use of a template as a result of it’s actually essential that one fringe of the fondant is lower completely straight (this would be the edge that’s on the highest of the cake) and that is the simplest manner to verify it’s straight. The template will likely be simply barely larger than the cake, in order that we are able to nonetheless trim alongside the underside edge.
Additionally, I discover it simpler to have an oblong template and be capable of simply place it onto my rolled out fondant and lower round it, than faff about with a tape measure/ruler ensuring the fondant is lengthy sufficient to go across the cake, and having the fondant sitting there drying out whilst you measure. Something we are able to do to cut back the time the fondant is uncovered to the air is price doing.
To make the template, measure the circumference and top of your cake. You have to so as to add 2-3” to the circumference, and 1” to the peak.
Mark the measurements onto waxed paper or baking paper, after which use the ruler and craft knife to chop it out. Rigorously roll this up and set it apart.
If you happen to favor, you’ll be able to skip the template and simply measure your rolled-out fondant with a ruler and lower your rectangle that manner, however to begin with I like to recommend the template as it would provide help to work sooner earlier than the fondant dries out.
Whereas I’m in prep mode, I wish to get all of my instruments and stuff set out. There’s nothing worse than groping round for a knife and realising they’re all half a kitchen away.
Oh, and with reference to knives, I wish to rub mine with just a little Crisco shortening (identical goes for the pizza wheel), this stops the fondant from sticking and helps maintain every lower clear and neat.
Wrapping the Cake
Begin by giving your fondant a superb knead. The period of time you’ll have to knead (sorry, couldn’t assist myself) will fluctuate by model, however mainly, you need the fondant heat and pliable however not too smooth, and never sticky. I discover with Satin Ice, I don’t want something to cease it sticking to the bench or my fingers as I knead, however if you happen to do then I recommend utilizing just a little shortening somewhat than cornstarch or icing sugar, you actually don’t need your fondant drying out.
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(If you happen to don’t wish to cowl the highest first, since you need the highest seam on the facet of the cake as I discussed above, then skip this subsequent bit, and transfer straight onto flipping the cake the wrong way up and protecting the edges).
Paint some vodka or water onto the highest of the cake.
Roll out a small piece of the fondant, aiming for a thickness of 3-4mm. Place it onto the highest of the cake, smoothing out any air bubbles.
Give it a rub with a fondant smoother…
…then place your waxed paper-covered board on prime, and flip the cake the wrong way up.
The fondant will flop down onto the board. You’ll be able to then use a knife to fastidiously trim across the cake and take away the surplus fondant.
Rub the edges of the cake with a skinny layer of shortening, attempting to keep away from the sting of the fondant.
I didn’t get a shot of this, however you mainly need simply sufficient shortening to cowl the ganache – it would look shiny but it surely shouldn’t be too white. Set the cake apart (and provides your fingers a superb wash!)
Give the remainder of your fondant one other temporary knead, then mud the bench with cornstarch, form the fondant right into a sausage and flatten it out onto the cornstarch (beginning with a sausage form makes it simpler to roll the fondant out in an oblong form).
Begin rolling it out, attempting to maintain the oblong form. Regulate the thickness of the fondant as you roll – keep in mind, getting the fondant even and skinny is among the keys to getting a neat seam in your cake.
Intention once more for 3-4mm in thickness, thinner in case your fondant is able to it. Ensure you transfer the fondant round as you roll, and add a bit extra cornstarch beneath if the fondant is sticking. Attempt to keep away from dusting cornstarch on the highest floor of the fondant except it’s actually sticky.
Lay your template onto the fondant, and press it down gently with a fondant smoother.
Use the ruler and pizza wheel or sharp knife to chop the form out. Make your first lower on the lengthy facet closest to you, and be tremendous cautious with this lower, ensuring it’s neat as it will likely be the highest fringe of your cake.
You is usually a little lazier/sooner with the opposite three sides, however that first one would be the star of the sharp-edged-cake present, so be mild with it.
The best way you roll your fondant across the rolling pin will rely on which hand is dominant. I’m right-handed and like to carry the roll of fondant in my proper hand and easy it onto the cake with my left. Which means I begin rolling the fondant from the right-hand edge. If you happen to favor to go the opposite manner, then clearly you’ll have to do the alternative of what I do.
Gently roll the very fringe of the fondant flat with the rolling pin, this may cease it from indenting an excessive amount of into the remainder of the fondant as you roll.
Very, very flippantly mud the floor of the fondant with cornstarch. You actually don’t need an excessive amount of right here, simply sufficient to take away any tackiness from the fondant, so it doesn’t keep on with itself once you roll it up. I normally simply use any extra cornstarch that’s on the bench from rolling the fondant, and dirt that over the floor.
I do know I stated up there that you just don’t need an excessive amount of cornstarch on the floor because it dries the fondant out, however this single gentle dusting right here is essential. Hold this brush close by for the following step.
Rigorously line up the top of the rolling pin with the sting of the fondant. Begin rolling the fondant across the rolling pin, preserving a cautious eye on the sting closest to you, to verify it’s flush with the top of the rolling pin.
If you happen to’ve used an excessive amount of cornflour as you rolled the fondant out, you could want to make use of the fluffy brush to mud the surplus off the underside as you roll it up. An excessive amount of extra cornstarch below the fondant will cease it from sticking effectively to the cake, and in flip, trigger air bubbles and different nasty you-really-don’t-want-thats.
Have a superb take a look at the image under, that’s the way you need the sting of the rolled fondant to look, even and flush by means of the entire roll.
Gently elevate the rolling pin as much as the cake, and press the top of the fondant in opposition to the cake, ensuring it’s effectively adhered.
Slowly unroll the fondant across the cake, smoothing along with your hand as you go. Ensure you maintain checking the underside edge, to verify it sits flush in opposition to the board.
If you happen to discover the fondant is rising up – this could possibly be because of the fondant not fairly being rolled flush across the rolling pin, or the roll could possibly be driving up like a pair of ill-fitting pants as you unroll it. You’ll be able to very, very gently pull it away from the cake and let the fondant sink down a bit.
Now, in case your fondant is a bit sticky, then it could, at any stage (however I discover it tends to be as I get to the top of the roll) keep on with itself. When you’ve got a glance the place my blurry finger is pointing on this photograph, you’ll see the place the fondant is sticking to itself just a little…
Don’t panic if this occurs, generally, you’ll be able to repair it. Simply no matter you do, don’t pull on the fondant roll to attempt to unstick it. Seize your flat paintbrush, and use it to softly run up and down the fondant, easing it aside.
You’ll be able to put a little bit of cornstarch on the comb if that you must, however simply the comb tends to be sufficient. I’m not going to deceive you, generally it will get so caught that you just can’t repair it. However it’s best to know that in all probability, it’s not your fault, it’s as a result of the damned fondant is sticky. That will solely make you are feeling barely higher as you take away the fondant and check out once more.
Issues that you must keep watch over whereas wrapping: the underside edge, the fondant sticking to itself.
Issues that don’t matter proper now: air bubbles (we’ll get ’em later), bumps, something to do with the surplus fondant across the prime, we’re trimming it off in a minute anyway.
When you get to the top of the fondant, place a ruler in opposition to the cake, within the center of the overlapped fondant. Attempt to simply flippantly relaxation it in opposition to the fondant, so that you don’t dent the fondant with the sting of the ruler. Use a scalpel to chop down by means of each layers of fondant.
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The free exterior piece will fall away, and you may ease again the alternative edge and take away the lower part from beneath. Be mild as you do it, generally you could not have lower all over each layers of fondant and also you don’t wish to tear it. Lower it once more with the scalpel if obligatory and pull it away.
Very gently press the sides of the fondant collectively along with your fingers. Don’t overlap them – make the lower edges sit flush collectively. If the sides are barely dry and so they don’t stick, you should utilize a small paintbrush dipped in vodka or water (vodka is best because it dries sooner and doesn’t mark the fondant) to dampen the sides so that they’ll stick. Use your fingers to rub up and down the seam till it has totally caught collectively.
Then seize considered one of your thicker versatile fondant smoothers and use it to buff the seam. Use the smoother in a brilliant mild round movement. The explanation that you must be mild is so that you don’t distort the road. If the road does begin trying just a little wonky, then use the smoother or your fingers to softly coax it again into line, so to talk.
“A straight line looks neater than a squiggly one” – Outdated New Zealand proverb*. *Not likely.
When you’re fairly pleased with the seam (you’ll be able to work on it just a little extra later), proceed to make use of the fondant smoother across the cake, buffing out any apparent bumps. Verify for air bubbles as you go. Usually, if they’re in the direction of the highest of the cake, you should utilize the fondant smoother or your hand to softly ease them up so that they launch the air on the prime. Different bubbles you could have to prick with a effective pin or needle (acupuncture needles are nice for this) and easy them out.
Verify across the backside (keep in mind, that’ll be the highest of the completed cake) and ensure the fondant is sitting flush in opposition to the setup board. If there’s a little hole, you should utilize the fondant smoother to very gently easy the fondant right down to fill the hole.
Whenever you’re principally pleased with the edges of the cake, trim the fondant from the highest of the cake. Run the knife alongside the cake board as you chop, ensuring the knife stays flush in opposition to the board, to get a superbly straight lower.
Pop a chunk of non-slip/grippy mat onto the highest of the board…
…then put your authentic setup board on prime…
…and flip the cake again over, right-side-up. If the paper in your board isn’t taped down, be tremendous cautious once you flip the cake again, to verify it doesn’t slide off the board as you flip.
In case your paper is taped, use a knife or scalpel to chop by means of the tape holding the waxed paper onto the board, and take away the board.
Rigorously peel the paper off the cake.
(If you happen to’re protecting the highest of the cake now so the seam is on the facet, then do that now and comply with the directions for flipping and trimming the cake)
Run a smoother across the cake, after which try your prime seam.
If the fondant hasn’t joined collectively effectively (as you’ll be able to see within the image above, mine hadn’t – completely deliberate it that method to present you.. you’re welcome!) you should utilize a paintbrush dipped in vodka to moisten it (argh, moist)…
…after which easy the fondant collectively along with your fingers. Hey, though it hadn’t totally joined up but, you’ll be able to see how neat the seam is already, proper?!
You can too use your fingers once more to softly rub across the seam, the warmth out of your fingers will assist to mix the seam. In case your cake strikes round as you’re smoothing, you’ll be able to pop one other piece of non-slip mat below the setup board to carry it in place.
Place a inflexible cake smoother in opposition to the facet of the cake, and the thick versatile smoother on the highest, and gently run across the prime edge with the smoother. It will press the fondant collectively and make the seam much less apparent (as a facet word, that is additionally the identical method I exploit to get sharp edges on a cake after I cowl it in fondant in a single piece).
Take a look at the video to see this in motion.
As soon as I’m pleased with the sting, I wish to go round the entire cake once more with the thinner versatile smoother. Utilizing the thinner one means you’ll be able to really feel any little lumps or bumps and work on smoothing them out. I normally do a bit extra work on smoothing the again seam as effectively (though if the again of your cake gained’t be seen, you could not wish to waste time smoothing it additional).
That is the again seam of my cake. No Photoshopping right here! Hopefully, you’ll be able to inform that by the very fact it’s not completely good or utterly invisible (if I used to be going to Photoshop it, I’d have made it invisible. However we’re buddies, so I don’t deceive you) however it’s fairly neat and tidy, and once you’re doing this at residence (or work) and never stopping to take images, you’ll have extra time earlier than the fondant dries so you can also make the seam practically invisible.
After which, you get to step again and take a look at your stunning fondant coated cake and provides your self a pat on the again. If you happen to can, I normally have a sore arm after kneading all that fondant. However I’m a weakling like that. So the back-patting is non-compulsory.
How to Retailer a Fondant Cake
It will rely on whether or not your cake has a perishable filling.
In case your cake is crammed and coated with ganache earlier than fondant, then the cake will likely be completely effective when left at cool room temperature for 2-3 days. Hold it away from gentle if doable, both in a cabinet or in a clear cardboard field or cake field. Muffins stuffed with buttercream however coated with ganache could be saved the identical manner.
Muffins which might be crammed and coated with buttercream ought to be effective saved as above at cool room temperature for a day or so. Any longer and you could want to refrigerate it. It’s greatest to place the cake right into a clear cardboard field or cake field first, because the field will soak up moisture from the fridge and defend the cake from any smells from different meals. The cake might want to come to room temperature earlier than serving, and it’s greatest to let it do this whereas nonetheless within the field, to stop condensation from forming on the fondant. If the fondant does grow to be moist and sticky from condensation, keep away from touching it, and if doable, direct a fan onto the cake to dry the floor. (This threat of sticky fondant is one cause I favor to make use of ganache, so I don’t have to refrigerate the cake.)
Muffins with perishable fillings like recent fruit ought to be saved within the fridge as above.
If you happen to run a cake enterprise, it’s best to verify what the principles and rules are in your space as to how you’re allowed to retailer your desserts.
Now you understand how to wrap a cake with fondant. As all the time, you probably have any questions on this system, you’ll be able to ask them within the feedback under.
Completely satisfied wrapping!
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