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Video:How to Use Gum Paste for Cake Decorating

with Susan Reid

Working with gum paste in cake decorating allows you to make lifelike details to add decoration. Get some tips on using gum paste for cake decorating in this how-to video form About.com.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Use Gum Paste for Cake Decorating

Hi, I'm Susan Reid from King Arthur Flour, I'm the editor of The Baking Sheet, and I'm here for About.com to talk a little bit about working with gum paste.

Working with Gum Paste when Cake Decorating

It's a mixture of cornstarch, gelatin, either xylose powder or gum tragacanth, but you can buy it already made. One of the things that's really nice about it is that you can make decorations that look very, very lifelike, and they dry hard and they last for a really long time. But it's not something that you would really want to eat.

It takes some time. The flowers that you make, or whatever you make, needs to dry for 24 hours before you can use it.

You're going to need specific tools like cutters, embossers, a nylon rolling pin, it doesn't have to be big. You'll need mats that will cushion the dough as you work with it so that you can put details on your flowers. You'll need some egg whites and some paint brushes, that's going to glue all your pieces together. Also you can get powders and pigments that will make your flowers shine. You can paint them after they dry and add real specific details to make them look very, very lifelike.

More on Working with Gum Paste when Cake Decorating

When you're working with gum paste you want to have your fingers greased with shortening. The gum paste comes in white color. You can tint it any way you want. Gel colors are best for that, and when you work with it you might want some vinyl or plastic gloves so that the pigments don't get on your hands as you're working them into the dough.

It's not a bad idea to have a little bag that has some cornstarch in it, you can use a piece of nylon stocking, and that way you can dust your surface if anything starts to stick.

If you want to make flowers like roses or calla lilies or any other kind of lily you're going to need some florist wire and some tape.

So working with gum paste is fun to do, it's satisfying, just be aware it's a little bit time-consuming. You can get really stunning results.

So if you'd like to know more about working with cake decorations, please visit us at About.com.

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