Monday, December 12, 2011

Price for a fondant-decorated cake

I do believe that the most critical, sweat-inducing part in a cake consultation is when the baker has to discuss with the customer client the price of a customized FONDANT cake....more often than not the client/customer are surprised with the price...huuuuuwaaaat? I experienced that when I had my consultation with Ms. Angelyn Tan (who made our wedding cake). But when she showed me her sample further discussion needed. i'm smitten to the highest power of admiration to those towering and lovely sweet creations. 

isn't she lovely?


Now, going back to the main point of this blog, in case they ask why FONDANT CAKE is much more expensive than other cakes which they could buy on their regular ordinary are some good points you can share to them....and (deep-sigh) get and seal the deal:

1. It is highly undisputable that FONDANT CAKES are way more beautiful, impeccably dainty and with much class in every single event or occasion! When you see a beautiful fondant cake in a's like the sweetest thing on earth that attracts you and finds the easiest way to your heart and stomach. It's like love at first sight- thing!!! So it is only prudent to assume that clients/customers know this already...but it is worth mentioning that fondant cake is definitely perfect for their special event...FONDANT CAKE IS DAINTY! Convince the bride that next to her wedding gown, guests are excited and curious to check the wedding cake. Thus, the cake should look as lovely, as pretty, as classy as she.

2. If you are using a ready made fondant (like Fondx or Elite), explain that the fondant you use is fairly expensive and of the highest quality and you think it's worth it for the flavor of the cake they want to order from you. 

i love this RTU fondant...and taste sooo good!

3. If you are making your own home-made fondant, tell them that you personally produce and make your fondant out of the BEST quality, it's like having a cake and gummy marshmallow at the same time. Who doesn't like marshmallow?

4. It takes a lot of skill and experience to work with fondant and make it look right. It takes much longer to finish a cake in fondant than buttercream. Fondant takes time to made, roll, apply and decorate into the cake. Explain to them that you have to stay up late or even deprive you of sleep for them to get the best quality cake they are going to pay.

5. Fondant is also temperature-sensitive. So, it has to be prepared in an air-conditioned room. 

6. To make the fondant-finished cakes you also utilize some materials/tools to design the fondant on the cake...and these tools are much much more expensive compared to a single spatula to spread the buttercream on an ordinary cake.

7. They will have two icing on the cake: buttercream or ganache AND fondant.

8. They're paying for your artistry/creativity too! But tell them that you are waiving your fees as long as they pay the price of the fondant. Good deal, right??

9. Food Coloring used on Fondant Icing is very expensive. One bottle is equivalent to a 8 inch cake covered with buttercream.

10. While you can finish a buttercream cake and refrigerate it overnight, fondant cannot be refrigerated after it has been put on the cake, so it has to be finished on the day of delivery. This makes for some tricky scheduling, and often you have to take fewer orders to accommodate them. Try to place the GUILT on the front line. JUST TRY!!

11. Since you have to finished the cake on the day of the deprive you of time with your love ones and time to sleep the night before the delivery.

12. Lastly, the best way to convince them that it is all worth it to take an order from you is to show them your cake portfolio.  

May you continue to educate and convince clients/customers why they should order fondant-finished cakes and cupcakes and may the force of fortune keeps coming back on your favor homebakers.


Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Fondant Glue

Fondant glue is so simple to make. You can store them for months. This is use for sticking, to paste or attaching your pre-cut out fondant to the cake or all together to create a figure or edible decoration to your cake.

Here's how....

you will need:

3 TBSP hot water
1/4 tsp CMC powder or tylose powder
clean bottle with airtight lid

STEP 1: Put the hot water to the prepared bottle.
STEP 2: Pour in the CMC powder or Tylose powder.
STEP 3: Mix or shake well. You will see there would be gel-looking element inside. Don't worry it will disappear soon.
STEP 4: Let it cool overnight.

VOILA, you have a a bit thick and transparent-looking fondant glue.

I would suggest you put some amount in a smaller container when using it. Don't dunk in your paint brush to the mixture over and over again in order to avoid contamination and discoloration.

Homemade Fondant in the Philippines

I once posted how to make Marshmallow Fondant. I was confident enough that it would help our dear customers and fellow cake decorators. However, during my short trip to the Philippines I tried to prepare the fondant using my own recipe (posted here "Ready..Get Set..Fondant!") but I was disappointed when I learned that it is NOT as smooth, as soft and flawless as what I can prepare in my kitchen. I tried to troubleshoot it with glycerine and it paid off. But still, not the same quality as my homemade fondant. DISASTER as you may call it... I was unhappy.

it should look like this before wrapping

I figured out that there are several factors affecting the finish product of my homemade marshamallow fondant made in the Philippines.... FIRST, QUALITY OF THE POWDERED SUGAR. I was surprised that the powdered sugar available in the market is not as refined and powdered as what is available in the US. I describe it a bit grainy. SECOND, the humidity of the environment makes it hard for the fondant to set and to stay dry all the time. I have to put a lot of cornstarch over the fondant after I applied it to the cake in order to achieve a dry-looking fondant. Geeee, that was the first time I saw a perspiring cake. No good!!! THIRD, poor quality of marshmallow in the local market. I tried to use Markenburg brand of mini marshmallow and it gave me a poor quality of fondant. It was cracking once I lift it and it is so hard to knead. Ohh boyyy, did I want to give up??? I personally will not recommend it to homebakers. I would suggest those re-packed mini marshmallow you can buy at the local market. It gives a more friendly and forgiving marshmallow fondant.

I will still recommend my tried and tested marshmallow fondant. But in a place like Philippines, you have to master the 3 Ps...  passion, patience and perseverance when making this. You have to be FAST and FURIOUS because fondant should not be overly expose in open air.  

Here are some of the few steps you have to incorporate on the method of preparing the fondant if you are in a humid place (like the Philippines).

Are you ready????? 

First, prepare your tools and ingredients.

Second, wash THOROUGHLY your hands. (sing the happy birthday song while washing your hands.  It's fun!)

You will need:

 big glass mixing bowl (it should be microwave safe)
measuring cups
measuring spoons
wooden spoon
plastic wrap
ziploc plastic
tub with airtight lead


450g grams mini  and good quality marshmallows
2 1/2 TBSP water
1 TBSP corn oil
20 grams GUMMIX powder
5-6 cups of powdered sugar
Crisco vegetable shortening
food coloring (Americolor) **OPTIONAL

1. Place the mini marshmallow in the bowl, put the 2 1/2 TBSP water, 1 TBSP .

2. Strain the powdered sugar. You do this to avoid chunk of powdered sugar to form when you knead it later.

3. Place the bowl (with mini marshmallow) in the microwave. Microwave it for one minute. 

4. While waiting for the marshmallow to melt, put vegetable shortening on your this.... if you refuse to follow this, you will regret it while kneading the fondant later on. It would be very sticky and messy if your hands are not COMPLETELY and RICHLY greased with shortening.

greasy hands

5. Using the wooden spoon coated and greased with shortening, mix the slightly melted marshmallows. Then, microwave it again for 30 seconds. 

It should look like this after the 1 minute microwave

6. Repeat this procedure (Step 5) until you see no trace of solid marshmallow. In my routine, I repeat it 3-4 times of putting the marshmallow back to the microwave for 30 seconds.

completely melted. It's HOT HOT HOT!

7. After the marshmallow have melted, (BE CAREFUL FOR THIS MELTED MARSHMALLOW IS TERRIBLY HOT), you can put food coloring at this point to the melted marshmallow but if you want to make all white fondant...just proceed to step 8.

put drops of food coloring. Americolor is strongly recommended!

mix the melted and colored marshmallow

8. Put 1 sachet of Gummix powder.

9. Make a well on the center of the strained powdered sugar. Put the melted marshmallow and mix it using the greased wooden spoon. Then, with your greasy hands. 
try to cover the side/wall of the stainless bowl with the powdered sugar

YOU HAVE TO WORK FAST and FURIOUS! Otherwise, the fondant will dry fast and there is a tendency that powdered sugar will form into tiny, hard chunks.

fast and furious

Then place it on the working mat and start to rock n roll..KNEAD..KNEAD...KNEAD (masahin na parang gumagawa ng tinapay). You only stop kneading when you don't feel any grain of powdered sugar. It should only take 5-10 minutes of kneading. As you knead, continue to greased your hands with shortening. TIPS: If the fondant mixture is DRY, mix in 1 teaspoon of water AT A TIME. If it is too sticky, knead in 1/4 cup powdered sugar at a time...continue to add until you feel that the consistency is improving. Temperature of the room is a factor when kneading the fondant. Don't make fondant when it is very humid.

i make sure to have big chunk of vegetable shortening
on the side of my working mat. Grease your hands as you go!

ooohh, this is fun!

10. When you roll and try to form a ball out of the mixture...try to press the surface and it should look like this.

11. Put shortening around the fondant.

12. Wrap it properly with plastic wrap (use food safe plastic wrap please). 

13. Put it in a ziploc plastic and make sure no air inside. You need NOT place it in the refrigerator/freezer. I only let it rest on my pantry.

sugar dough wants to take a rest OVERNIGHT.

14. Put it in an airtight tub or container. It is always best to let the sugar dough rest for a few hours or even OVERNIGHT before using it. When you are going to use the fondant, you have to knead it a bit before you roll it out. Kapag tumigas yung sugar dough just put it in the microwave for 10 SECONDS. Then, knead and roll out. Now, you're ready to cover that cake with fondant.

Goodluck and have fun!

Baking and Cake Decorating

My adventures with baking and cake decorating started when I migrated in the US. I wanted my son to have a fondant-covered cake for his first birthday in 2008. I called every bakery around town and I was surprised that a two-tiered, simple cake is already $450. HUwaaaaat!? and boyyy, did I sweat? I decided to do some experiments and bought basic baking tools online. I already know what I wanted to create but I just didn't know (then) if I can execute it the way I want it  to appear. Little did I know that what started as a seemingly innocent attempt to bake a fondant birthday cake for my son made out of curiosity and enthusiasm at that time will blow into a serious addiction.

my first project..made and baked with love

Visitors asked where did I order the cake and cupcakes. i only smiled... What happened after that day is all but history of my interest to learn cake decorating. I eventually found myself ventured into the world of cake making during my free time. I started making cakes out of the boxes (I love Betty Crocker's). Then I continued reading books and magazines, plus informative blogs and tried some of other baker's recipes. I took down notes of every recipes that I've tried and those cakes and cupcakes which doesn't taste good and were not tongue-friendly went straight to the trash bin. Shoot!!!! Then, I started making my own recipes from scratch...had combined and compared recipes I have collected...I tried to adjust some of the ingredients on my original source through repeated baking. Tip #1: get people to volunteer as your taste-testers....they should be impartial and not bias. If they criticize your cake too harsh...kick them out of your kitchen (just kidding). 

Curious and hungry for more interesting ideas about how to decorate cakes, I bought books and tools and just taught myself how to do it. I watched Cake Boss and got inspired of Buddy's talent in directing his talented artists. He's the boss, remember! People around town kept buzzing me for orders but I can only take limited orders per week.

I love also browsing photos of cakes made and designed by talented cake artists and i was so humbled and inspired by them. Be that as it may, baking experiences in the kitchen taught me enormous things beyond books and blogs can teach and I collected these knowledge and skills along the way.

The other aspect of cake decorating that I really enjoy as well is the creative process. Cakes are fun because you can make a cake to look like almost anything. I never thought I have creative side. All I know is that I love cute stuff but I never thought I would love fondant to's like playing a clay dough. I like playing with fondant and I like challenging myself in trying something that I've never done before. Cake artists can relate that their best work is created when they are able to do as they please and dictated by their heart's delight.

I received a warm hug when this cake was picked up

It fascinates me whenever I receive precious look on people's faces when they see my cake creations. The happy squeals...some were in tears (tears of joy, i guess)...warm thank-you hugs....these are more than enough payment for long hours and hard work in the kitchen.

My real goal here is to create a place where Filipino bakers and cake artists can share their creations and ideas so it can help others too. If this site can be of help to somebody make that special and DAINTY cake for that special someone then this has all been worthwhile. 

Believe in yourself that you can make and bake a long as you have the passion and determination to make that desire possible. remember this, this is DO-able!!!!! Someday, soon you will look back with gladness that your cake decorating experiences had all started with mishaps and bad days in the kitchen. 

Thanks for visiting! Please visit us again and leave nothing BUT comments.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Hey, it's me!

Please to meet you (and i hope you are also please to meet the blogger)...I'm Miles!
I love sweeeeeeets!

This is my way of giving back to BAKE IT DAINTY customers, especially to my kababayans who live outside Metro Manila...who have limited resources for baking and cake decorating. My hearT goes out with you girls. I want to be of help in the smallest possible way that I can...just don't ask me to make videos of "how-to-do/s" because I can't and I won't do it. (my face turning red already!)

Okey, i need to do a brief introduction...

1. my real name is Maila but I got used to being called and named by my closest friends "MILES"'s something "baduy" and funny behind that nickname. Ready??? I love to smile (PMS days not included)....that's why my friends placed letter "S" at the end of the word SMILE. There, now you can smile with me...go, it's free!

2. I'm a faithful, dedicated mother and playmate to my only son Jian Paolo.

3. I'm married to a wonderful man.

4. I''m a lawyer (this is not advertising though). I've been a practicing lawyer for five years. I have discovered that it is better to stay in the kitchen decorating cakes than argue with an arrogant judge or defend a pathological, stupid liar in court. Life can be sweet when you just try to choose to make it less complicated. Agree??? 

5. I started baking when I was 12 years old. To this date, I can still remember that while my playmates/friends would be playing after school..I opted to go to the market and buy my ingredients and bake cookies and pies in the afternoon....then sold it to our neighbors. I only stopped doing such routine when I went to college and pursue my dream to become a lawyer.

6. Baking, like a great LOVE, came back after 20 years. We belong!

7. It dawned on me one day that I should be decorating my son's first birthday cake. I won't buy a simple fondant cake for $450!!! I braced myself and gathered my guts to learn how to cover a cake with fondant. The result made me embraced baking and cake decorating with all my heart!

8. These are the few people who have contributed to my baking and cake decorating skills...never rmind if their ways of inspiring me were made in absentia. Looking and browsing on their cake works just gave me motivating force to develop my cake decorating skills....they're my inspiration and I have such huge admiration for them. drum rolls pleeeease........

NIKKA ALEJAR - Veronica's Kitchen
KATE - Simply Kate Cakes
JOY RAMOS - Cake Temptation (Davao City)

9. I'm a member of ICES since 2010 and I still need to plan on joining its annual convention in the near future. I agree to share with you (through this blog) what I learned and would acquire to learn. I believe that to share is one way of keeping the learning exciting and fun. 

10. I have a wonderful partner MARIE ORDONIA in running Bake It Dainty online store in the Philippines. We have this vision to share to all our kababayans useful tools in baking and cake decorating and we strive to offer quality products. Most of our products are tried and tested by me for over 3 years as a baker and cake decorator. I am not claiming as an expert on this field but I can only give honest feedbacks on these products and make sure that you pay for quality and usefulness of the items. We take delight on being part of every homebaker's and baker's and cake artists' cake creations. Please keep supporting Bake It Dainty...and we will love to give freebies to loyal friends and customers (WINK! WINK!)

Me and my friend Marie

Lastly, I'm a true-blooded Filipino...and I am very proud of it!!!

Happy baking everyone!!! 

Bake It Dainty gives back

Let me begin this blog with a huge THANK YOU for all our friends and customers who have been part of the success of Bake It Dainty online store! You girls and guys are part of this success! As my way of paying back..I created this blog to give you some hint, tips and advices about baking and cake decorating. I would try my best to be better to give and share what I have learned about cake decorating based on my personal experiences and from what I have learned from my short classes about cake decorating. 

Bake It Dainty started last year..OCTOBER 2010. I decided to bring to the Philippines most of the tools I use in baking and decorating my cakes. I want to share them to homebakers and baking enthusiasts.  I received a warm reception from my "kababayans" who also love to bake. I can even remember that in the afternoon of my first day in the Philippines I got to deliver the items to Sis Dang Salazar because she was so excited to see the items she pre-ordered. I can still remember up to this day the feeling that I had when I saw her very happy with the items she bought. Today, she's a successful homebaker and businesswoman running Gianna's Cakes. Orders kept coming from the day I arrived until I have to leave for US. I want to believe we are the first cake decorating online store in multiply and Facebook  (please feel free to assail this...and please dispute it with evidence).

Anyways, I have a genuine admiration to FILIPINO talents and I believe Filipino can excel even more in the confectionery world with the help of tools and techniques being utilize in US and Europe. MAGALING ANG PINOY! Objection may be noted but will be stricken off immediately (wink wink!)

This blog is for all Bake It Dainty friends/customers and sisters who continue to believe in themselves that through perseverance, passion and love of baking.....they can bake and create a PRETTY, DAINTY cakes!

Again, thank you for making Bake It Dainty a part of your baking and caking experience.

I wish you all a successful baking experience!