All About The Lace
Yes, I’m lame – I sing the title as if it were the words to “All about the bass”! One of the hottest trends in the industry right now is edible lace, and it doesn’t seem to be going anywhere any time soon. We’re going to look at the pros and cons of some of the products out there. I want to start by saying what is to follow is simply my opinion and I am not paid by nor do I represent any of these companies (not that I would complain if some of them came knocking at my door ;) ).
Let’s start with the grand daddy of them all – Sugarveil. Sugarveil has been on the market for years now and is the original edible lace (as far as I know). Pros to using Sugarveil are the easy of mixing it and the nice looking mats. The cons are that up until recently it took forever to set at room temperature, and the mats are the most costly out of all of the mats available.
Silikomart is a brand out of Italy starting to make a footing here in North America. Their lace line is called Tricot and they have a nice variety of mats available in full size and “slims”. They offer a powdered mix in white, yellow, pink, and red – all have different flavours. Simply add water and mix. It goes into an oven and is ready quite quickly. Price point is quite reasonable on the mats and the mix. The only cons are the color selection – other than white and maybe red – I think yellow and pink are a bit random, and it does dry hard if left out for more than a half hour or so (unless you add two teaspoons of glycerin to the mix, then it stays more flexible). I get my tricot from Icing Inspirations. Overall Grade: 8.0/10
Cake Lace by Claire Bowman is a hot brand out of the UK. Their mats are probably my most favorite that I have used so far, and I love that aside from their regular white and black mix it comes pre-mixed in some amazing colors including metallics. The resulting lace remains flexible and has probably the most beautiful finish out of all of the products I’ve used. The only con is if ordering direct from the UK the shipping and duties can be costly, but you can get your Cake Lace fix stateside from Swank Cake Design who also have some great tutorials on using this product. Overall grade: 9.0/10
Homemade edible lace recipes have made the rounds online. Honestly, I have tried a couple figuring I would save a few dollars (to be able to invest in more mats). Needless to say, less costly yes – likeable results – not really. Overall Grade: 4.0/10
Another alternative to lace mixes is using lace molds with fondant (or gumpaste, modelling chocolate, etc). There are too many molds out there to go into great detail, but the line worth mentioning is Marvelous Molds’ Earlene’s Lace molds. These molds give the most detailed result when using non-liquid mediums. The pro here is that the lace pieces can be cast quickly and can be mixed and match to get very intricate, detailed results! One of the cons is that it doesn't yield a delicate product if you fill the entire mold, but the detailing is phenomenal. You can, however, roll your fondant out thin prior to placing it in the mold to get a more delicate look. The only other real con (and it isn’t really a con if you think of it as an investment) is the price point…..the molds are a bit on the pricey side, but if you look at the extreme detail and versatility (we are talking pretty much limitless design combinations), then it is a worthwhile investment. Overall Grade: 8.0/10
There are still a few brands of lace mixes and mats I would love to try including Flexi-paste out of Australia, Magic Décor & Sugar Dress out of Italy. For me personally, I like using a mixture of the molds with the lace mats. I find it adds some depth and dimension. There is also no harm in adding some pearl dust and edible pearl to your lace pieces either – they help enhance the look of the final product. I hope this look at edible lace has inspired you to try out some of the brands available and see which combinations work best for you! If you are in the Norwich CT area this May, I will be teaching the cake in the photo above at Cake Addiction. Class will be officially announced soon, but you can get the full info here. We're going to have a great 2 days full of technique and maybe a prize or two ;)
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