Screwed Up Fondant...What To Do, What To Do...

The problem area
  Whenever I find a problem with fondant on my cakes, it's when I've already decorated it and it's ready to go, or so I think. Then I'll see the little spot that looks like a crack, or I'll stick my fingernail in it and take out a little piece when I'm moving it around.

You can usually fix little problems like this. Keep in mind, though, that fixing fondant will never look as good as a full, unblemished sheet, and sometimes you just need to start over.

I had a little issue with the hippo cake that I did a couple of weeks ago. I had put the fondant on it, and because the cakes were strange shapes, I needed to really work it to get the hippos covered completely.

The spackle

When I had let them dry out and set up, I noticed that the mouth on one of the hippos was really messy. The fondant had dried out where I had seamed it together, and it didn't look pretty. Luckily, it was in a place that was going to get some hippo whisker texture, but it still needed to be fixed.

Adding the spackle

There are a few ways to fix holes in fondant. If it's still soft, you can rub some shortening onto it and kind of "massage" it until it smooths out. For teeny tiny cracks and spots, you might be able to get away with filling those in with shortening. You can also use some royal icing and pipe that into the cracks, then paint over it with some water until it smooths out and fills in the holes.

To deal with the hippo situation, I used a watered-down type of fondant spackle. I mixed some of the grey fondant in a little water to make a goopy paste. I used a spatula to apply the paste to the cracks and it acted as a filler to fill in the gaps.

Once it had dried out, I was able to put some tiny pinpricks onto the mouth area and it was fine. Naturally, in the course of filling in those cracks, I stuck my finger into the fondant in a couple of places, but I was able to use my fondant spackle to fill those in, too.

This method worked fine in this case, but it was a hippo anyway, and it didn't need to be perfectly smooth. Sometimes it's better to start over, but it's important to know what your fixing-it options are!

 Kara Buntin owns A Cake To Remember LLC in Richmond VA, and cake supplies online at and

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