Another Homemade Cake Lace Recipe, And What Different Ingredients Do

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I've done a few posts about different recipes to make your own cake lace, but I decided to try one more recently because I was curious about the unbreakable gel recipe and whether it could be adapted for lace.

(Click here for the recipe roundup: Sugar lace recipes)

The unbreakable gel recipe isn't really 100% unbreakable, but it's definitely pretty flexible and strong. I had one person a while back tell me that she made some of it and was actually able to knit with it, so I was impressed by that!

I decided to make some to see if a thicker texture would be spreadable enough to put in one of the lace mats that make the thin lace.

First, here's the recipe for the unbreakable gel:

1/4 cup marshmallow fluff
1 tsp tylose
1/4 cup boiling water.

Mix the tylose and fluff up, then add the water in bit by bit and stir it until it's piping consistency. You might not need all of the water.

Pipe it into shapes on greased wax paper, let it set up for 24 hours (it will feel like it isn't drying out but it will eventually), and peel it off the paper carefully. It might stretch when you pull it if you're not careful, so go slowly.

Now here's what's in marshmallow fluff:

So we have corn syrup, sugar, water, then small amounts of egg white, cream of tartar, xantham gum and flavorings.

Here's what the key ingredients do in a nutshell:

Sugar--Flavor and sweetness, obviously.
Corn Syrup- Keeps the sugar from crystallizing as quickly and acts as a softener.
Egg white- structure and texture
Cream of Tartar- An acid that keeps sugar from crystallizing as quickly.
Xantham Gum- texture

So basically, we know that this stuff is marshmallowy, but the proportions of corn syrup and sugar are also high enough that it stay sticky and semi-spreadable. 

To make it stiffen up and set up, we need to increase the amount of gums in it, so that's why the tylose (a plant gum) in the unbreakable gel recipe works. The water in the recipe will then thin it out and make it workable. When the water evaporates and the mixture dries, what's left will be the fluff with the tylose, which should still be marshmallowy but more solid because of having more tylose in it.



So I mixed up the unbreakable gel recipe, but I didn't use all the water. I just stirred it enough to make it spreadable, about the consistency of thick sour cream. It was a little lumpy, but that's okay.



I spread it in the lace mat, and made sure to fill all the cavities, then I cleaned off the mat by scraping the surface with an offset spatula.



I let it sit for 24 hours, and since it's really dry here as I'm writing this, it had dried out enough to remove it from the molds. It came out with a tiny bit of effort, so I worked carefully to try not to stretch it. I also put some in a feather mold to see if it would work, and it did set up fine in that, and had the imprint of the mold in it. So it could be used in thicker molds, but it will need to dry longer.

Note, and this is important...this recipe is highly dependent on how humid it is! Two weeks after I made it. it's still flexible, but it gets stiffer and softer depending on whether it's raining or not. So always do a test run before you need to use it! :)





I was able to wrap it around a cake tier, and it keeps its shape enough that it could wrap around the top and still stand up.



So this recipe worked really well...I would be careful to put it on the cake fairly close to the time that it will be delivered, though, because it will continue to dry out and it could shrink. And if it's really humid, it might take a lot longer to dry, and it might sag if it absorbs moisture from the air, so experiment with it for the conditions where you are!

The good thing about it was how fast it was to make, and how it doesn't involve any disgusting gelatin, or any kind of cooking, other than heating the water!


Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC,  online cake supplies at  www.acaketoremember.com and www.acaketoremember.etsy.com