Saturday, May 30, 2009

Butterfly Fondant Cupcake Toppers

After the rose cake I made earlier this week, I had all kinds of marshmallow fondant left over. My grandmother said that she had never had a fondant covered cake before, so I decided to make some fondant cupcakes just for her.

This is my first foray into the world of fondant cupcake toppers and I am really pleased with how they turned out (although there is always room for improvement of course!).

The cupcakes are plain chocolate with chocolate buttercream and marshmallow fondant toppers. The recipe for the fondant can be found here and the recipe for the cake is here (it's the one on the side of a can of Hershey's cocoa. Such an amazing cake recipe! And great when you don't have any butter on hand). The design for the toppers was based on some cupcakes I had seen on Flickr earlier this week, so I can't take the credit for that.
I already had lots of blue and white fondant left over from the cake, so I just needed to make some pink by kneading in some colour (I used Wilton Aster Mauve icing colour) with some of the white fondant.

I made the butterflies and the flowers ahead of time, using three different sized blossom cutters and a butterfly cutter (all Wilton) and allowed them to dry overnight so that they would hold their shape. For the butterflies, I left them to dry in folded pieces of cardboard lined with wax paper, laying the center of the butterfly in the crease of the cardboard so that it would dry in the correct shape with its wings angled up. For the larger flowers (although they're all quite small), I first used a small ball tool to made a round dent in each of the petals and then a large ball tool quickly pressed in the center of the flower to give the blossom an overall rounded shape. For each of the two smaller flowers, I used the small ball tool in the center of the flowers. I dried the flowers in Wilton flower formers.

This morning when I made the cupcakes, I assembled the toppers as the cupcakes cooled after coming out of the oven. The first step was to roll out the blue fondant to a little less than a quarter inch thickness and punch out circles the size of the cupcakes. Next I piped on the most of the green frosting, starting with a dot in the center to anchor the butterfly (using tip #12) followed by the vines piped with tip #3. Then I placed the butterflies and flowers on the cupcakes, secured by the buttercream and finished off the vines by piping some leaves on them using tip #352 (I love this tip!! It makes gorgeous leaves of all sizes so easily). The last step was to pipe little yellow dots in the center of each of the flowers and then the body of the butterfly, all using a #2 tip.

Once I got going, I was able to make thirty toppers fairly quickly. I think they look quite nice for how little work they were. After the toppers were complete, I frosted the cupcakes and gently placed a topper on each one. The frosting holds it in place.

I brought some over to my mother's house for Nanny to try and she liked them, so I call that a success. Most of the rest of them will be accompanying BF to his scuba class tomorrow. As of tomorrow afternoon he will be a certified rescue diver! I am so proud of him (not to mention happy that if I get in trouble when I'm learning to dive this summer, he will be able to rescue me, lol)

I can't wait to try this technique again. I think I need to work on getting the edges of the toppers to line up properly with the edges of the cupcakes as you can still see parts of the wrapper when you look at the cupcakes top-down. Suggestions welcome as always!

And here is another picture of my army of butterflies