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How Hard Does Fondant Set Up?

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Q. I want to use fondant roses and swags on a wedding cake; will they harden or stay soft enough to cut through? Should I add flavoring to purchased fondant?

A. As our regular readers know, we consider fondant — or sugar paste — to be one of the great taste disappointments of our age. It looks so beautiful and can be manipulated into so many stunning decorations, but take a little bite, and it's little more than a glob of raw confectioner's sugar.

The fondant will firm up once you're finished working with it, but will certainly will not become so stiff that you cannot cut it easily. Most fondants usually include some glycerin or gelatin to keep them flexible and soft.

Yes, you can add a crystal-clear flavoring to the fondant, but we doubt it will have much of an effect on whether or not people eat your decorations. People who know what fondant tastes like will let your beautiful decorations dress up their plates, and people who have a taste for it (children, basically) will eat it whether or not it has a little almond or lemon extract.

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