A clean, smooth finish may transform your next cake or happy birthday cake into a professional-looking celebration cake with a few simple steps. Here are the top 10.

1. Find a fondant you like.

Brands vary, as do their handling. Some brands dry out rapidly, crack more than others, and are incredibly sticky. You have to play Goldilocks and find the perfect one for you. You can typically buy tiny amounts of fondant to try it out. If you are in a sugarcraft guild, ask other members for advice. Like us, most members are eager to express their views, hence this article.

2. Prepare a tidy working area.

If you are like me, you will make a sugar volcano while working. Fondant is prone to dust and crumbs. You don’t want a lump of fondant on your marzipan that you have to cut out.

3. Cover your fondant with marzipan.

If you or your recipient dislikes marzipan (some do), use fondant instead. This marzipan layer provides a sugar coating that enhances your final covering. Allow your marzipan layer to cure for at least 12 hours before topping it with fondant. If you don’t use this undercoat, your cake will resemble a supermarket kid’s cake. These are acceptable for kids who want to eat cake, order cake online but not for your special occasion.

4. Make the fondant.

Before coating your cake with fondant, knead it. The amount of kneading depends on the temperature; in the middle of summer, the fondant will be soft and may not require much kneading. Insufficient kneading of fondant results in a mini-workout when rolling it. Once soft, store fondant in an airtight bag until needed.

5. Sherry your marzipan cake 

Now place your marzipan cake on the cake board. Please excuse my brief digression. My pet peeve is when individuals work hard on a cake and showcase it on an unprotected silver cake board. It takes 15 minutes to cover a cake board in fondant, and it can be done ahead of time. It can match your cake’s colour and add to the overall professional appeal. Rant over. Coat your cake with a dark paintbrush. This way, if any hairs come out, you can readily see them on the cake and remove them. I must state that I have never had a brush lose a hair. Apply the sherry sparingly but thoroughly on the marzipan. Drenching the brush will discolour the fondant on the board. It will pool at the cake’s base and bubble out when the fondant is applied. If you don’t coat the cake well, air bubbles will appear between the marzipan and fondant. Instead of liquor, use rose water or boiling water.

6. Spread fondant out.

This requires a clean, dry surface. This is done on a non-stick craft mat. Art & craft stores and haberdashery stores stock them. You can also roll out directly onto a clean work surface. Use white fat on fondant sticks (note the word little – if you use too much, you and your fondant will be sliding around the worktop.) Use your rolling pin to measure the size of your fondant rolled piece. With the rolling pin, mark the sides and top of the cake with your thumb. The pin’s entire length will tell you how wide and deep to roll your fondant. For example, if the edges and top of the cake are half the length of the rolling pin, your rolled fondant must match this size. Phew! That should be clear. The fondant should be 0.5 cm thick. You may buy spacers to make your fondant an equal thickness. You might also use your discretion and get an even coating without spending any money.

7. Roll the fondant onto the cake.

Place the rolling pin on the fondant’s farthest edge. It’s time to roll it back towards you. Remember to roll the pin back if you have a large piece of fondant so that it overlaps. So when you pick up your fondant, you’ll know. If you don’t, it’ll fall off the rolling pin. You might be able to save it before it sticks. If not, you may swear a little and restart.

8. Cover the cake in fondant.

Before lifting your fondant onto your cake:

Make sure the cake is close to the rolled fondant. Lift the fondant and align the bottom edge with the cake’s side. Allow extra fondant at the cake’s base. Working away from you, lower the fondant over the cake. Using your fingers, smooth the fondant onto the marzipan, removing any air bubbles. Smooth the fondant around the cake. Once the fondant is flat on the cake, use your palms to push it onto the marzipan on the sides. Smooth the fondant downward, removing air bubbles as you go.

9. Trim the fondant around the cake’s base.

Place your palms on the cake’s side, with your tiny fingers at the base. Firmly around the cake, pressing slightly with your tiny fingers to ensure the fondant thoroughly adheres. To remove excess fondant, run a palette knife around the cake’s base. You don’t want a massive line around the fondant on the board, so don’t press too hard. It takes practise to cut the fondant without leaving rough edges, so don’t worry if your fondant has a few mouse holes’. Cover with ribbon or piping.

10.Finish a cake 

You may notice small cracks or flaws on your fondant now. Your hands’ heat can smooth out fissures. Prick any air bubbles with a tiny pin. Using your hands, smooth the fondant and decrease the pinhole. After dealing with cracks and air bubbles, use a smoother to create a level and consistent finish. Don’t be scared to smooth with pressure now. The fondant is still soft and flexible. Once the sides and top of the cake are flat, use your palms to create a curve around the top border. Moreover, you can buy cakes online or make birthday cake delivery and enjoy the occasions.