When it comes to creating beautifully decorated cakes, fondant is a popular choice among bakers and cake decorators. Fondant provides a smooth, flawless finish that can transform any cake into a work of art. However, if you’re planning to use fondant on your cake, you may be wondering whether it’s possible to freeze the cake before applying the fondant.
Understanding the Freezing Process
Before we dive into the topic, let’s briefly understand the freezing process.
Freezing is a method of food preservation that involves lowering the temperature of an item to below its freezing point, which inhibits the growth of microorganisms and extends its shelf life.
When it comes to cakes, freezing can be a useful technique for various reasons.
Benefits of Freezing Cakes
Freezing a cake before applying fondant offers several advantages. Firstly, it allows you to prepare your cake in advance, which is particularly helpful when you have a busy schedule or need to make multiple cakes for an event.
Freezing also helps in locking in the cake’s moisture, preventing it from drying out. Additionally, freezing can enhance the cake’s stability, making it easier to handle and decorate.
Factors to Consider
While freezing cakes can be beneficial, it’s important to consider certain factors before proceeding. Firstly, not all types of cakes freeze well.
Cakes with delicate fillings, such as fresh fruit or cream, may not retain their texture or taste after freezing.
It’s also essential to ensure that your cake is properly wrapped and sealed to prevent freezer burn and maintain its quality.
Proper Freezing Techniques
To freeze a cake before applying fondant, follow these steps:
- Allow the cake to cool completely after baking.
- Level the cake layers if necessary.
- Wrap each layer tightly with plastic wrap, ensuring there are no exposed areas.
- Place the wrapped layers in an airtight container or freezer bag.
- Label the container with the date and type of cake.
- Store the cake in the freezer for up to three months.
Thawing the Frozen Cake
When it’s time to thaw your frozen cake, remove it from the freezer and keep it in its packaging. Allow it to thaw gradually in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight.
Avoid unwrapping the cake until it reaches room temperature to prevent condensation from forming on the surface.
Applying Fondant to a Frozen Cake
Now, let’s address the main question: Can you put fondant on a frozen cake? The answer is yes, you can.
In fact, some cake decorators prefer to work with frozen cakes as they tend to be more firm and less prone to crumbling. However, there are a few important considerations to keep in mind.
- Before applying the fondant, ensure that the cake has completely thawed to room temperature. Any residual chill can cause condensation, making the fondant sticky and difficult to work with.
- Gently remove the cake from its packaging and place it on a sturdy surface or cake board.
- If needed, level the cake layers to ensure an even surface for the fondant.
- Lightly brush the cake with a simple syrup or a thin layer of buttercream to provide a sticky surface for the fondant to adhere to.
- Dust your work surface with powdered sugar or cornstarch to prevent sticking.
- Roll out the fondant to the desired thickness, ensuring it is large enough to cover the entire cake.
- Carefully lift the rolled fondant and drape it over the cake, starting from the center and gently smoothing it over the sides.
- Use your hands or a fondant smoother to eliminate any wrinkles or air bubbles and achieve a smooth, polished finish.
- Trim off any excess fondant using a sharp knife or fondant trimmer.
- Once the fondant is applied, you can proceed with decorating the cake further using additional fondant decorations, edible paints, or other embellishments.
Tips for Success:
- Work efficiently but calmly when covering a frozen cake with fondant, as the colder temperature may cause the fondant to firm up quickly.
- If the fondant becomes too soft or sticky, place it in the refrigerator for a few minutes to firm it up before continuing.
- Take your time to ensure the fondant is smooth and free of imperfections, as these can affect the overall appearance of the cake.
- Experiment with different techniques, such as draping the fondant in sections or using a fondant smoother, to achieve the desired finish.
While it is possible to freeze a cake with fondant, it is generally recommended to freeze the cake before applying the fondant for best results.
When properly stored, a cake with fondant decorations can be kept in the freezer for up to three months without significant loss of quality.
It is not advisable to thaw a fondant-covered cake in the microwave, as the heat can cause the fondant to melt or become excessively soft.
After thawing, store the cake in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight to prevent the fondant from becoming sticky or losing its shape.
In conclusion, freezing a cake before applying fondant can be a convenient and effective way to prepare ahead and achieve a professional finish.
By following proper freezing and thawing techniques, you can successfully freeze a cake and decorate it with fondant, resulting in a visually stunning and delicious treat.
Remember to handle the frozen cake with care, allow it to thaw completely, and take your time to achieve a flawless fondant-covered masterpiece.