|Prep time: 40 minutes||Cooking time: 10 minutes||Total time: 50 minutes|
Preparing a gum paste recipe is similar to making fondant, but the addition of gum tagacanth gives the dough the added flexibility for making delicate flowers and forming figures.
Gum paste can be rolled out much thinner than fondant can, allowing you to make realistic-looking flower petals.
When making gum paste drapes or lace impressions, attach them to the cake right away. Flowers and figures should be allowed to dry. Once dry, they can be dusted with petal dust or painted with a combination of lemon extract and powdered food coloring. Then they are attached to the cake with a dab of royal icing.
The gum paste recipe will be very soft at first. After it sits in the refrigerator it will become stiff. As you knead the gumpaste, the warmth of your hands will soften it. Add a dab of shortening and work it in to the gum paste to make it pliable.
You can roll the gum paste out on either a greased surface or one dusted with corn flour. Dust the rolling pin to prevent sticking.
Use only paste food color to tint gum paste. Add a tiny amount at a time,using a toothpick. Knead the color into the gum paste recipes until the color is uniform throughout. Some colors tend to darken over time, so tint the gum paste slightly lighter than the desired color. After you add color, you may find that the gum paste becomes too soft. Allow it to sit for 15 minutes and it will return to its normal texture.
Gum paste dries quickly when exposed to air, so only remove what you need from the plastic.