Items you will need
- 16 ounces mini marshmallows
- 2-5 tablespoons water
- 8 cups sifted confectioners' sugar
- 1/2 cup solid vegetable shortening
- Mixing bowls, microwave safe
- Measuring cup
- Rubber spatula
- Plastic wrap
- Resealable bags
Bakers rely on plastic icing, otherwise known as "fondant," to create smooth, elaborately decorated cakes. Made from a mixture of sugar and a gelatin, plastic icing is sweet, elastic and holds its shape. Using marshmallows for the gelling part of the recipe increases the sugary-sweet flavor and makes it possible to mix fondant at home. With a few ingredients from any kitchen cupboard, you can start using this professional baker's secret by tomorrow morning.
Place mini marshmallows and two tablespoons of water in a mixing bowl. Place in the microwave for 30 seconds. Stir with rubber spatula. Heat again for 30 seconds and stir. Repeat until the marshmallows are all melted -- about two and a half minutes total.
Sift 6 cups of confectioners' sugar onto the melted marshmallows. Fold the sugar into the marshmallows until well mixed.
Set up your work space. Rub a layer of vegetable shortening over a clean counter or cutting board. Set a bowl of 1/2 cup vegetable shortening nearby. Wash hands.
Pour the marshmallow mixture out onto the work space. Grease hands well with vegetable shortening.
Knead the mixture like a dough for about eight minutes. It should become firm, smooth and elastic enough to stretch without tearing. Add confectioner's sugar to dough as needed during the process. Re-grease hands and work space as needed.
Form the plastic icing into a ball. Coat the icing with a layer of vegetable grease to preserve moisture. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a resealable bag with all of the air squeezed out. Allow the icing to sit overnight in the refrigerator before use.
You can add coloring or flavoring to the plastic icing at the end of step two. You can also break off a small section of the finished icing and tint with food coloring. Knead the coloring into the icing until completely mixed.
If the icing starts cracking while you knead it, it is too dry. Add 1/2 tablespoon of water at a time until the icing is soft again.
Marshmallow mixture will be hot when you take it out of the microwave.
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