Please forgive me for I have strayed….I have been having so much fun lately that I forgot to stay on the straight and narrow.
The straight and narrow path of the ‘chocolate’ persuasion, I mean 😉
With all the excitement of my kid’s birthdays, engagement, baby arrival, and wedding cakes to discuss and plan, my mind has been whirling with pretty decorations of all sorts. The bright colours and flexible options of fondant icing have been absolutely enticing and have been so much fun to play with that I forgot, actually forgot, about chocolate! Shameful….I know 😦
Just looking back at a recent baby arrival cake that I did, I realized that in my last minute decision to add a cute little bunny, I had immediately turned to the pink fondant icing that was on hand. Gasp, only then did I see my betrayal!
I had in my cupboard, the most gorgeous chocolate mold of Sanrio characters that I had collected on my travels, and yet I FORGOT!!! Well, my 3D chocolate molding skills certainly needed improvement anyway, so I have paid penance and spent a few evenings last week molding little, pink, chocolate bunnies. I threw in a few molded cherubs for a bit of extra technical practice, while I waited for my bunnies to set. I am delighted with the results and here are a few of the lessons I have learned along the way;
- Do not over heat chocolate- an obvious tip but so easily done. Be patient if you are heating by microwave and allow the last few bits of chocolate to melt through stirring
- Use oil based chocolate colours- normal food colouring or gel pastes will seize chocolate and make it thick and unworkable
- Use a little piping bag to fill molds- go slowly try to avoid air bubbles at this point, much easier than trying to get rid of them later
- Tap and check for air bubbles- they are sly little things and it is completely frustrating to only find them on your finished product after you have unmolded the set chocolate! Use a toothpick to stick into your unset chocolate to burst them if necessary
- Give yourself plenty of time to allow for the chocolates to set- unmolding is as easy as a simple tap, if the chocolates are well set. If you find the chocolates are not budging…they are not set!
Icing work is amazing in its applications and I am grateful to be able to draw on the incredible experience of dedicated cake decorators to help me achieve the results that I am looking for. However, I have learned my lesson this week and paid my dues. Should I ever need a Bliss Bunny I am definitely back to chocolate 🙂