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How to Make Fondant Stick to Ganache

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How to Make Fondant Stick To Ganache

Options.

In general, I enjoy options. It’s nice to have a choice. But sometimes choosing is hard. So that’s when it’s nice for someone to tell you how to make your choice.

If you’ve ever wondered how to make fondant stick to ganache, then this post is for you. I’ve listed a few common things that can be used to make fondant stick to your perfectly ganached cake, and some of the pros and cons of each one to help you make your choice.

This post is the first in what (I hope) will become an ongoing series of short, to-the-point tutorials on specific areas of baking and cake decorating. If you’ve got any questions or suggestions on what you’d like to see in a post, then feel free to comment below or send me a message, and if I know how to do it, then I’ll look at writing a post about it.

And if I don’t know how to do it, I’ll just admit it. ‘Cause no one likes those people that pretend to know everything and then just make crap up. And since I don’t know it, I’ll probably then go and try and find out, so then we’ll both know.

Learning is fun, right?!

Back to the fondant sticking business. After you’ve covered your cake with ganache using my handy dandy tutorial (or however you like to do it, I won’t judge) then you need to let it set overnight, or at the very least for a few hours. It will also slightly dry out the surface of the ganache, which makes a nice shell on the cake and helps you keep your nice sharp edges once you apply the fondant.

Then, you need to apply something to make the fondant stick. All of the below options will do just that, but they all have pros and cons that may determine which one you’d like to use for a specific cake. So, it’s time to find your perfect match…

 

Crisco

How To Use: Rub a thin layer of shortening onto the surface of the cake.

Pros:

  • Doesn’t dry out – you can rub it on before you start rolling out the fondant.
  • Is more forgiving if you have trouble covering the cake and need to remove the fondant to try again. The Crisco allows you to peel the fondant off without damaging the ganache underneath. This generally means that not much ganache will be on the fondant so you can re-knead it and try again.
  • Absorbs into the fondant – you don’t notice it’s there when the cake is cut.
  • Fills in small holes/dents/imperfections in the ganache, leading to fewer air bubbles under the fondant. This is why it’s my preferred choice for covering carved cakes.

Cons:

  • Some people dislike the idea of shortening in general, from baking with it to using it in buttercream.
  • Soft shortenings like Crisco can be hard to buy in some countries. In New Zealand, very few shops stock it, we pretty much have to buy it online.

Water

How to Use: Boil and cool some water. Brush or spray onto the surface of the cake.

Pros:

  • Everyone has it on hand.
  • Can be sprayed on with a spray bottle making for easy application

Cons:

  • Can dry out – depending on the humidity in your kitchen, if you brush it on before you start rolling out your fondant, the water may evaporate before you’re ready to apply the fondant. This means you may need to brush it on once your fondant is already rolled out, which can mean your fondant starts drying out and is more likely to crack and get elephant skin while you’re smoothing it on the cake.
  • Can leave marks on the fondant if you get the water on your hands and then touch the fondant, the water starts to dissolve the sugar in the fondant and leads to watermarks that can’t be removed.

Vodka

How To Use: Brush or spray onto the surface of the cake.

Pros:

  • Can be sprayed on with a spray bottle making for easy application
  • Tends not to leave marks on fondant like water does. If you’re wrapping a cake in fondant or applying stripes, if the vodka seeps out it will dry quite well without leaving marks.
  • The higher alcohol content helps to sterilise the surface of the cake.

Cons:

  • Evaporates quickly (much more quickly than water) so it needs to be brushed on just prior to applying the fondant, which again means the fondant can start drying out before you even get it on the cake.
  • Some people prefer not to use alcohol on cakes for religious or other personal reasons.
  • The cost of vodka can be prohibitive, depending on where you live and where you buy it (I just buy the 1 litre bottles when they’re on special, as I use it for other cake decorating uses like painting, cleaning brushes and wiping down cake boards. Oh, and making vanilla extract)

Sugar Syrup

How To Use: Make a sugar syrup (also known as “simple syrup”) by boiling together equal parts sugar and water until the sugar dissolves, then cool to room temperature before use. Spray or brush onto the surface of the cake.

Pros:

  • Nice and tacky, can mean fewer air bubbles as the fondant is well adhered to the ganache.
  • You can make a large batch and store it in the fridge for several weeks.

Cons:

  • Needs to be made and cooled before use.
  • Tends to stick very well to the ganache, meaning if you need to remove the fondant and try again, there can be a lot of ganache marks on the fondant.
  • Because it’s super sticky, there is more likelihood of damaging the ganache if you need to remove the fondant, which can mean the ganache needs touching up before fondant is reapplied.

Thinned-Down Jam

How To Use: Make jam syrup by thinning down apricot jam with cooled, boiled water. Strain through a sieve to remove any lumps. Brush onto the surface of the cake.

Pros:

  • Like sugar syrup, it’s nice and tacky.

Cons:

  • As above with the issues with fondant.
  • Needs to be made.
  • The jam flavour (usually apricot) doesn’t necessarily go with all cakes.

 

So there you have five options for making fondant stick to ganache. Hopefully, it’ll help you make your choice. If you’ve got another awesome option that you’d like to share, please let us know in the comments below.

 

Happy, er, sticking!

~Natalie
xx

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