Who says fondant has to be hard?

You know you’ve thought it. You see a recipe on Pinterest and you think, “Well that’s great! But I could never make that!” Well, that’s what Areavoices blogger Shannon Olson once thought. An untrained baker, she’s become a local expert on fun creative, cake decorating and she says it’s easier than you might think. Take for example fondant. The smooth, beautiful frosting looks difficult to master and you’d think you had to spend a lot of money to get the look. But Olson shows us how to make your own fondant. In this case, she’s using it to make a cake that looks like a box of popcorn.

Fondant Covered “Popcorn” Cake

1 prepared cake, cooled and sliced in half. (Shannon used a pan that was 8 X 9.5 X 3 Pyrex 2.75 liter glass pan.)
caramel popcorn

Fondant ingredients:

16 ounces mini marshmallows
2-5 Tablespoons water
2 pounds powdered sugar
Crisco (white not butter flavored)

Icing ingredients:

1 cup butter, softened
4 c powdered sugar (adjust to consistency needed)
1/4 c milk
2 tsp vanilla

To make the fondant place place marshmallows and 2 Tbs. water in a microwavable bowl. Heat for 30 seconds and stir. Continue heating 15 to 20 sec, stirring in between, adding additional water if needed until smooth and completely melted.

Stir in 3/4 bag of powdered sugar.

Grease counter top or board with Crisco, pour out fondant.
Grease hands and begin kneading, working in more sugar if needed. Fondant should end up being smooth, not dry and not sticky. If it gets too dry add a very small amount of water.
Take about ¼ of it and mix in red food coloring.
Store red and white fondant in plastic wrap. Set aside.

Icing ingredients
1 cup butter, softened
4 c powdered sugar (adjust to consistency needed)
1/4 c milk
2 tsp vanilla
Cream butter, add 4 c powdered sugar, milk and extract. Add remaining sugar until smooth spreadable consistency.

When cake is completely cooled, cut it to the desired size for your popcorn box. Spread the icing on the cake. Don’t worry about whether crumbs mix in with the frosting. This layer of frosting is simply the glue that will hold the fondant in place. Appearance doesn’t matter. Refrigerate 30 minutes. Take fondant out of plastic wrap. Cover countertop or workspace with powdered sugar and begin to roll out the fondant to the size needed to cover your cake. Roll out red fondant as well and make the red stripes for the popcorn box. Carefully place white fondant over the top of the cake with an opening at the top. Place red stripes on top of the white fondant. Place caramel corn at the opening of the cake. Refrigerate until it’s served.

For more ideas on cake decorating or vintage decorating check out Shannon Olson’s blog at http://vintagenorthdakotakitchen.areavoices.com