Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

I want to go everywhere I haven't been, and back to everywhere I have been.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Making a Fondant "Beach" Cake

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Have you ever decorated a cake with fondant?

Fondant has always been one of those 
baking things that scared me...
you know, like yeast. 
If fondant is scary, yeast is terrifying! 
I've done a great job
avoiding recipes calling for either of these ingredients...
until I signed up for a cake decorating class 
while I was on my cruise

I really wanted to take the cupcake decorating class, 
but it was full. 
I had a choice of two other classes...
cake decorating using fondant;
or not using fondant.

"Or not, please."

You can imagine my terror when I walked in and saw fondant.
I froze. 

What to do? 
I could chicken out and leave...
or tough it out and stay.

I looked around the class.
There was a young boy next to me.
He didn't look afraid.
He looked ready

Deep breath...
OK, I can do this.

Guess who was teaching the class?
The Cake Boss!
That's right, master baker Bartolo Jr. "Buddy" Varlastro, 
of Carlo's Bakery was going to teach us 
how to decorate a cake with fondant.

Well, he wasn't there in person...
But he did talk to us via video...for a few minutes, anyway. 

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

The technique was actually shown to us 
by a baker trained by the Cake Boss himself.

Each station had a layer cake with "dirty icing" spread on it.
 There's nothing unsanitary about dirty icing...
it's just a name for crumb-coating --
a thin layer of buttercream applied to seal in all of the crumbs,
so they don't poke through to the decorative icing layer. 

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

We had three rolls of fondant, a bag of buttercream, 
sugars, gels and tools.

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

We watched as the teacher demonstrated the entire process...

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

Voila! It's a beach cake!

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
The teacher's cake was our turn to dip our toes
into the fondant ocean.

First, we flattened each package of fondant into discs, 
about 6-8 inches in diameter,
 stacked them together, and cut them in half. 

We brought the stack of semi-circles up to a fancy rolling machine,
and our dough was flattened and stretched 
till it was the size of a pizza dough.
The three colors created a marbleized look.

I couldn't get photos of these steps since I was busy making sure 
my fondant didn't end up on the floor.

Very carefully, I placed the fondant on top of the cake...

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
Photo by Zack's Mom

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

And pressed it up against the sides.

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

The wrinkles were ironed out with the
fondant smoother...
Hmmm...I wonder if that would work on my face.

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

We trimmed the fondant around the base of the cake. 

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

So far, so good.

Then, it was time to decorate our "Beach" cakes.
OK, I got this. 

Icing was piped around the bottom.

I started to put the blue gel on the cake to create the ocean,  
but my neighbor, Zack --  
he's nine, by the way -- 
informed me that I'm supposed to do the sand first.


An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

  We piped buttercream on the top as a base for the "sand," 
which was brown sugar.

Zack was very busy over there. 
  I took a quick peek at his cake to make sure I was doing it right. 

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

OK, I'm good.

Next, it was time to make the ocean with the gel.

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

I used the leftover fondant to make a giant octopus...
(stop laughing!)

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake  --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
Which is when I thought I heard the Cake Boss yelling,
"You're Fired!"

One thing I am not, is artistic.

I embellished with an umbrella, shell and flip flop...

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

But not before I stole a glance over at Zack's cake 
to see if I could get any ideas.

his cake was better than mine!

He used his extra fondant to write his cousin's name on it...
 he was going to give it to him for his birthday.

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes
Zack's cake

Crap. Why didn't I think of something like that?

I thought about swapping cakes when he wasn't looking, 

but I think he saw my octopus, and he'd have known it was me. 

OK, are you ready for the big reveal?

Hold onto your beach hat...

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes


Is that hilarious?

Our cakes were packed up
 to be delivered to us at dinner. 

An easy-to-make fondant "Beach"  cake --- Ms. Toody Goo Shoes

I couldn't wait to see the looks on Mr. and Jr. Goo Shoes' faces.

So fast forward to later that night...

Our waitress came over and said,
"that's some cake they're bringing out to you.
Are you celebrating something?"

And I don't know why I said,
"Yes, it's our anniversary."

Before I could pull the words back in my mouth,
a dozen waiters came out with the octopus cake
and starting singing Happy Anniversary to us.
The waitress made us hold hands...

which was fine, except we were laughing hysterically.

Everyone in the restaurant was looking 
at our Octopus Anniversary cake.

It was one of those moments.

The cake was delicious, by the way.

I guess I am officially over my fear of fondant,
so I'm going to give it a try at home.

I'll have to make the cake,
crumb-coat it, and roll my own fondant, though... 

 and I may need eight arms to do it.

Linking with:
Metamorphosis Monday 
Tweak It Tuesday
Tasty Tuesday
The Scoop 
Treasure Box Tuesday
Totally Talented Tuesday 
Wow Us Wednesday 
Wake Up Wednesday 
What's It Wednesday 
Time To Sparkle 
Home and Garden Thursday
Feathered Nest Friday 
Home Sweet Home 
Be Inspired 
SImple and Sweet Friday 
Weekend Bloggy Reading  
Best of the Weekend 
Weekend Social 
Recipe Sharing Monday


  1. Yours looks so professional! I bet that was a fun class. I didn't know they had classes on cruise ships. I've never used fondant either.

    1. They did the hard part by having a perfectly smooth cake to start, and rolling the fondant in a machine. I'm going to try to do it on my own, though! They have all kinds of things to do on cruise ships, Kelly -- it was crazy!

  2. What a neat adventure and your cake is adorable!

    1. It was a lot of fun -- going to try to make one on my own and see how that turns out ;)

  3. Amy, I would have been so intimidated with the cool kid standing next to me as well...I love, love, love the octopus!

  4. It's a beautiful thing!!! I have never used fondant - love the octopus!

    1. It was a lot of fun, Rosella! I'm going to try to make one myself - but not an octopus!

  5. How cool is that?! That is so awesome you took that class on your cruise! I would have been completely intimidated!

    1. I was intimidated, but I toughed it out! And now I learned enough to give it a try on my own! That should be a riot!

  6. I thoroughly enjoyed this post. What a fun thing to do. You did a better job than the instructor. BTW, I will be posting about a beginner recipe for yeast that was written just for people like you and (me). Remember if it fails you are only out a pound of flour.


    1. Thanks, Madonna! I'll be looking for that yeast post! I.m always intimidated about the kneading and rising part!

  7. That is so cute! I'm scared to death of fondant, too. One day I'll take a cake decorating class. I can make a leaf like no one's business. And now I want cake!

    1. I'm going to try to make my own cake soon - it may be a disaster, but I've got to try! The class was a lot of fun - now I'd like to take others!

  8. That looks so cool and so fun! I have never used fondant, however a good friend of mine uses it all the time and does amazing things with her cakes. Looks so yummy!

    1. I'm really impressed with people who really know what they're doing with fondant. I had a fun time at the class, and now I want to try it on my own. Could well be a disaster!

  9. How fun!! I love the cake boss! I love the way he says fondant too! I have watched tons of his shows and got tired of hearing about the fondant after awhile :) I would love to learn how to use it though. Your cake is fabulous!!

    1. I think he does all of his cakes in fondant! I'm going to give it a try on my own soon - - it may be a disaster!

  10. What a fun story! I think your cake looked great and I loved the octopus. I have never worked with fondant although I think it would be really fun. What a great experience.

    1. The class was a lot of fun, Lana. I can't wait to give it a try on my own!

  11. Amy, you are so funny! I was laughing all the way through your post. Good for you for trying your hand at it! The teacher obviously did not take his time-- the fondant is cracked all around the top. Yours looks way more professional. The cake looks really yummy. My problem with fondant has always been (aside from decorating cakes with it) what to do with it when you eat your cake? It is too sweet and overpowering for my taste. I guess it is ok to scrape it off your slice of cake?

    1. I know, Mila! His cake is not that great! He made it in about 5 minutes flat. And I agree - I can't eat the fondant. I just eat the cake part! Can you imagine eating that Octopus body? Blech!

  12. What a great post - and the cake looks delicious and fun too.

    1. Thanks, LadyFi! It was so much fun. Gonna try it on my own soon!

  13. Wow, your cake looks delicious..I really enjoyed your cake story. What fun. Have a happy week!

  14. An amazing recap of the class. You really captured how Mich fun it was. We were so happy when Zack landed next to you at the cake class! Your cake looked amazing. Thank you for sharing some of the pics of his cake. He was very excited to see he is now famous and on your blog :)

    1. It was my pleasure being next to him! Made me a little melancholy for the days when my son was younger, and would have had as much fun as Zack did! Sorry I spelled his name wrong - I'm going to edit it now. I have two more posts coming about the cruise, and in the last one, will be mentioning your bingo win! PS - I heard the Breakaway got stuck in the Hudson River when it returned this Sunday, and it took 3 hours for them to dock. Also heard they had trouble docking in Florida. Thank goodness our trip was uneventful!

  15. You know, I've seen those smooth sort of cakes but never realized or thought about them being fondant or what was all involved. This is was so interesting and of course, funny too. that I've seen that it takes 8 arms to do this, I'll stick with that icing in a can stuff ! :) Well, except at sugar cookie time when I go all-out-gourmet and make confectioner sugar icing, ha ha. Your cake is just adorable, though :)

    And kudos to Zack for helping you along...he did such a nice job on his too! :)

    1. Same here, Deb. For a long time, I had no idea what fondant was. Zack was adorable - he reminded me of my son when he was young, and would have really enjoyed that class!

  16. Very pretty! My formerly a pastry chef husband makes the cakes in our house. I just find a pic and send it to him :)

    1. Well, that's pretty fabulous! I like baking, but I stick to pretty basic stuff!

  17. You make me LOL Amy - such a great post !
    My daughter does fondant - I don't ( I don't do anything other than fresh whipped cream -boring but delicious
    I'd say you aced the class ( I'd like to be - under the sea - in an Octopuses garden, with you LMHO )

    1. We shall see how my fondant cake comes out this weekend...could end up being a very funny blog post if it flops! I don't really like the taste of the fondant - it's way too sweet but it looks nice. I'd rather have fresh whipped cream any day!

  18. Now, seriously, your cake looks better than the teacher's!!! :-)

  19. What a fun class! I've never used fondant before, but you've inspired me to try. Thanks for sharing on The Weekend Social. Hope to see you again tomorrow.

  20. I got as far as buying the fondant, but it is still in the pantry, lol I don't know if I could do as good a job as you did Amy, your cake is awesome!! Maybe I will actually give it a try! :)


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