Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Vegan Fondant Lets You Make Cakes Like a BOSS

Happy Vegan MoFo, kids!

(Oh, by the way, please go VOTE for this blog in the Circle of Moms Top 25 Food Allergy Mom blog contest! Sexy Vegan Mama was a late nomination, and there are only a few days left of the contest, so I have a lot of catching up to do! You can vote once every 24 hours. Thank you!)

Cake decorating has come a long, long way since my mama (that's Sexy Vegan Grandma to you) started her little side special occasion cake biz -- which later turned into a ten-year stint as a bakery owner. It seems today, it's all about the fondant. Gotta have the fondant. I, for one, am not a fan of the waxy, mostly tasteless commercial fondants on the market, and the simple make-your-own recipes I've run across are largely not vegan. (Hello, gelatin-laden marshmallow ingredients...)

So, I made my own make-your-own recipe. LIKE A BOSS.

It tastes better than most, and will fulfill your vegan cake needs. Disclaimer: I do not fancy myself a professional cake decorator, by any stretch of the imagination, so my cake photos don't do the recipe justice, but... just bear with me.

Anywho, I'm sure your cakes will look better than mine with this simple recipe:

Sexy Vegan Mama's Vegan Fondant

1 c. (2 sticks) vegan stick margarine (I use Nucoa)
1 c. light corn syrup
1 t. almond extract
1 T. cream of tartar
2 lbs. vegan powdered sugar
1/2 t. fine sea salt

1 - 1 1/2 lbs. additional vegan powdered sugar

In a stand mixer, combine margarine, corn syrup, almond extract, cream of tarter, two pound powder sugar and sea sale until well-mixed and smooth.

Dust your clean work surface with a bit of powdered sugar and dump mixed fondant onto surface, then knead in an additional pound to pound-and-a-half powdered sugar to create desired consistency.

Finished fondant should roll out easily between sheets of waxed paper to a thickness of 1/8-inch to 1/4-inch before being placed on cake.

Don't forget to prepare your cake with a crumb coat before applying fondant.

I recommend my Coconut Almond Cream Cheese Frosting. You may also use a spritzer bottle filled with water to mist the cake before and after applying fondant to 1) help it stick and 2) smooth the fondant without cracking and 3) add a sweet shine.


Color your fondant by cutting off an appropriate-sized chunk, then squeezing a few drops of food coloring on it and kneading thoroughly, until evenly mixed. I recommend wearing gloves, unless you're fond of blue hands (or whatever color you're using).

Keep your remaining fondant covered with a damp tea towel while you're working, so it stays moist.

If you find your fondant is drying out while applying to the cake, spritz it with water.

Additional notes on creating the cakes pictured above:

For Pockets's birthday cake last year, I made a bass guitar. I used Crows candy for the knobs, blocks of vegan chocolate for the plate thingies under the strings, sour licorice "floss" for the strings and bars between the fret mark thingies, and vegan chocolate chips for the fret marks. I don't play guitar... Can you tell?

Anyway, for the wood grain on the neck, I GENTLY kneaded some cocoa powder into the fondant (not thoroughly kneaded, mind you) before rolling out. The uneven distribution of the cocoa powder, when rolled, produced a lovely wood grain effect:

For his graduation last year, I made a set of books with a mortarboard on top. Omigosh, I can't even begin to tell you the panic I was experiencing as guests began to arrive for his party, and the cake wasn't finished. I sort of threw it together, so pardon the little cracks and waterlogged appearance of the "book cover." Anyway, to make the "pages," I applied a white fondant to the side of the cake, then used a knife to score it to represent the pages:

For the mortarboard top, I covered a square of thin cardboard in fondant, and used red licorice floss and strings of white frosting to make the tassel, and secured with a fondant "button." Again, please ignore the little cracks and finger marks I didn't have time to smooth before photos. Ha!

 Each "book" is resting on a cardboard base, hidden by the fondant, and cut wooden dowels were pushed through each layer to support the weight of the layer above. There are dowels in the top book to support the mortarboard.

Happy decorating!

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