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Ready to Roll Fondant VS Homemade Fondant

Updated: Sep 17, 2023


Fondant Dilemma
Fondant Dilemma

I am truly amazed by those people who make fondant from scratch for their Cake business. Rolling fondant from scratch is a real nightmare, requiring a lot of energy, force, muscle, and, of course, patience. I wonder why many people in the Philippines prefer to do it from scratch. Here in New Zealand, I cannot be bothered to knead and exert so much effort until my energy is depleted. Time is precious, and I prefer to buy the ready-made one.


Let’s figure out this fondant dilema by weighing the pros and cons of DIY Fondant and Ready to Roll Fondant:


Ready to Roll Fondant VS Homemade Fondant

DIY Fondant:

  1. You know all the ingredients you have added to the mix.

  2. You think it is cheaper than the ready-made.

  3. It tastes better.


Most people I have spoken with usually give these three reasons for choosing to make their fondant from scratch. On the other hand, people like me, who use ready-made fondant, have these reasons:


Ready to Roll Fondant:

  1. Convenience.

  2. Saves time and energy - therefore saves labor.

  3. Easy to use.

  4. Lesser time results in less work, and the cost will offset.


Now, let’s consider the downsides of each option:


DIY Fondant:

  1. You will have more ingredients to buy (icing sugar, gelatine, glucose, tylose, shortening, glycerin), which increases your inventory cost and can be stressful to source.

  2. It is more time-consuming to search, purchase, and weigh each ingredient, plus the kneading process.

  3. Kneading the fondant requires much effort, time, and energy.

  4. Getting the right color for colored fondant takes a lot of time and can lead to waste.

  5. The cost can end up the same or higher compared to ready-to-roll fondant due to additional labor and ingredient expenses.

  6. Control of adding coloring may not be accurate.


Ready to Roll Fondant:

  1. Perceived as costly by some.

  2. Some people find it doesn’t taste as good as homemade fondant.

  3. There might be concerns about unknown ingredients in the fondant.


When starting out and receiving 1-2 orders at a time, homemade fondant may work fine. However, as your business grows, doing everything from scratch becomes less fun. Your time is better spent improving the taste and quality of your base cake, designing the cake, adding details to decorations, assessing operational requirements, marketing, handling after-sales services, and managing your business finances.


You can always hire extra staff, but human labor and time are valuable. They could be better utilized in expanding your business, rather than wasting time marketing, weighing, and kneading fondant.

If you worry about added ingredients, most food companies have Technical people who understand these ingredients and ensure they are safe. Additionally, government food regulations limit companies from adding harmful ingredients. As a food technologist, I can assure you that we do not include anything poisonous. Although some ingredients might have long-term effects on health, in the cake decorating business, many things aren’t 100% healthy. Just choose the right brand, read the label, and seek expert opinions.


Basic Fondant Recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg powdered sugar (sifted)

  • 1 tbsp unflavored gelatin

  • 1/4 cup cold water

  • 1/2 cup glucose syrup

  • 1 tbsp glycerin

  • 1 tsp clear vanilla extract or any flavoring of your choice

  • Food coloring (optional)


Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, sprinkle gelatin over cold water and let it sit for a few minutes to bloom.

  2. Place the bloomed gelatin in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave for about 10-15 seconds until the gelatin is dissolved.

  3. In a large mixing bowl, combine powdered sugar and the dissolved gelatin.

  4. Add glucose syrup and glycerin to the mixture and stir until well combined.

  5. Knead the mixture on a clean, lightly powdered surface until the fondant becomes smooth and elastic. If the fondant is too sticky, add more powdered sugar until you achieve the desired consistency.

  6. If desired, add food coloring to the fondant and knead until the color is evenly distributed.

  7. Wrap the fondant in plastic wrap and let it rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes before using.


Marshmallow Fondant Recipe:

Ingredients:

  • 400 grams marshmallows (mini marshmallows or regular marshmallows)

  • 2-3 tbsp water

  • 1 kg powdered sugar (sifted)

  • Vegetable shortening for greasing


Instructions:

  1. In a microwave-safe bowl, place the marshmallows and add water.

  2. Microwave the marshmallows in 30-second intervals, stirring after each interval until they are completely melted and smooth.

  3. In a large mixing bowl, gradually add the powdered sugar to the melted marshmallows, stirring until it becomes too difficult to stir with a spoon.

  4. Grease your hands with vegetable shortening and transfer the mixture to a clean, lightly powdered surface.

  5. Knead the fondant until it becomes smooth and elastic. If the fondant is too sticky, add more powdered sugar until you achieve the desired consistency.

  6. If you wish to add food coloring, knead the color into the fondant until it is evenly distributed.

  7. Wrap the marshmallow fondant in plastic wrap and let it rest at room temperature for about 30 minutes before using.


Now you have the option to choose between making your fondant from scratch or using the convenience of ready-to-roll fondant for your cake decorating needs!



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