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Best medium to make pine needles or evergreen branches?

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
I need to make some pine needles to put on a cake, which I have never done before. The needles need to be long, and I was thinking of trying to make some evergreen branches too.

I would like to know what the best medium would be to accomplish this. I would like to use marzipan so it can be served with the rest of the cake, but I don't think I can roll it thin enough or long enough to make the needles without it breaking. Would fondant or gumpaste work? What about modeling chocolate? How would I go about making evergreen branches? Any ideas or suggestions would be appreciated-thanks in advance!
post #2 of 7
when I made a cactus cake, I used royal icing to make all the needles. One problem was that they are very fragile and I had to make tons of them in case (which they did) break on some. You can drizzle chocolate to make the needles as well. I did make branches one time using thin pretzel sticks and then used the chocolate to pipe the needles. Either way, it's a pain. So either royal icing or chocolate is my choice. I think I just saw on the Wilton website, they had something with pine tree look for cupcakes. Check that out.
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post #3 of 7
I would use a garlic press and some fondant and make the ends pointy. It should work fine.
post #4 of 7
I was thinking along the same lines as cashley. I'd use a clay extruder to make a long, thin rope. Cut to the length you want then gently roll one end back and forth to make a point. I'd use fondant mixed with tylose so that I could make it soft enough to put through the clay gun, but then it would dry firm.
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks for your suggestions. Do you have any recommendations for an extruder or just go to the craft store and pick up one meant for clay?

Also, how much tylose should I add to the fondant? I've never used tylose before so it's all new to me!

Thanks again!

Annie
post #6 of 7
Clay extruders - Makins brand with the twist screw. Looks kinda like a corkscrew handle.

Or, I recently purchased the Walnut Hollow brand at Michaels. It is also a screw drive, but the handle is more of a crank - like a pepper mill. I prefer that to the twist handle. The only downside to the Walnut Hollow is the screw has a bajillion threads! Takes a very long time to make progress. Thank goodness it has a comfortable handle.

As for adding tylose powder, about 1/2 tsp to a baseball sized blob of fondant. I don't really measure, I just sprinkle it on my work surface and knead the fondant until it picks up all the tylose. I don't recommend sprinkling it on top of your fondant because it could 'poof' out while you're kneading.

The texture of the fondant will not change right away. That's what makes it so much easier than gumpaste. That said, by the next day, you will notice the fondant is firmer when you go to knead it. So, use it right away before it gets too firm to put thru the clay extruder.

Knead a little shortening into the fondant/tylose to facilitate extruding.
post #7 of 7
Thread Starter 
Thanks Diane!
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