Make beautiful cakes and cupcakes!
1. Clear a large, smooth work surface.
2. Prepare the cake or cake tiers for fondant with buttercream icing.
3. Bring your fondant to room temperature.
4. Measure the cake width and height. If you are doing a multi-tiered cake, measure one tier at a time.
*For a round cake, add the cake width plus twice the height. For example, if it is a 10" cake that is 3" high, your measurement will be 10+3+3=16". Add 4 to 8 inches to this measurement. This is the diameter you will need your fondant to be. Write it down.
*For any other cake, measure the greatest width across the top (this would be diagonally, from corner to corner on a square or rectangle cake) and then add twice the height. For example, if it is an 8" square cake that is 3" high, your measurement will be 12+3+3=18" (the 12 is rounded up from 11.31) Add 4 to 8 inches to this measurement. This is the diameter you will need your fondant to be. Write it down.
5. Place one piece of vinyl (plastic wrap or wax paper works too) on the counter and lightly coat with powdered sugar.
6. Take the fondant and flatten it with your hands into a rough pancake shape.
7. Lay the flattened piece of fondant onto the powdered vinyl, sprinkle with more sugar and cover with the second piece of vinyl.
8. Use the rolling pin to flatten the fondant to your desired thickness, usually about 1/4 inch. Every few 'rolls,' flip the fondant (using the vinyl covers) and (very important) pull the vinyl off and re-sprinkle with sugar. If you don't do this, you will end up with fondant covered vinyl (the fondant won't come off). Fondant covered *vinyl* is clearly not as tasty as Fondant covered *cake.*
9. When the fondant is the desired diameter and thickness, confirm that it is not attached to the vinyl. It should stay in place but peel off easily.
10. Peel off the top layer of vinyl. Pick up the fondant using the the bottom piece of vinyl.
11. As you approach the cake/cake tier, begin flipping/un-peeling the fondant over the cake. DO NOT start at the base of the cake. Remember that extra 4-8 inches? Start on the table, then cover the side, then take the remainder of the fondant sheet across the cake, down the other side and you should have a somewhat equal remainder on the table on the side opposite your starting position. **This is the trick that none of the books tell you. It is this extra few inches all the way around the cake that make it go flat on the sides, rather than hanging like a table cloth (with too many folds).
12. Using a flat-sided glass or fondant smoothing tool, flatten out the top of the cake, square up (or level off) the corners and smooth down the sides.
13. Using a small paring knife (a pizza cutter also works), trim off all of the fondant excess that is on the table. Be careful with your cutting as you don't want to pull the fondant back away from the cake.
14. Voilà! You should have a beautiful fondant covered cake/cake tier.
Small cookie cutters and x-acto knives make good tools for cutting out shapes, letters, etc.
Instructions and photo from wiki-how.com