What could solve this issue you ask? Well, for me the answer is easy, marshmallow fondant. It's a little messy when making it, but the quality of it and the taste alone make it perfect. It stays soft and easy to work with.
I had not made this recipe in years when I had to let go of my microwave. It's really easy to make. I got the recipe from What's Cooking America? Peg Weaver makes it easy for us to learn to how to make this recipe.
These are the supplies you will need:
I can vouch for her when she says to use good quality marshmallows. In the past to save some $$ I have actually used a cheaper brand and it really did not do the fondant any justice.
Prep time: 60 Minutes
Yields: 1 batch of fondant
Note: Please be careful, this 1st stage can get hot!
Melt marshmallows and 2 tablespoons of water in a microwave. Place the bowl in the microwave for 30 seconds, open microwave and stir, back in microwave for 30 seconds more, open microwave and stir again, and continue doing this until fully melted. It usually will take about 2.5 minutes total.
Place 3/4 of the powdered sugar on top of the melted marshmallow mix.
Now grease your hands GENEROUSLY (palms, backs, and in between fingers), then heavily grease the counter you will be using and dump the bowl of marshmallow/sugar mixture in the middle.
Start kneading like you would bread dough. You will immediately see why you have greased your hands. If you have children in the room they will either laugh at you or look at you with a questioning expression. You might even hear a muttered, "What are you doing?"
Keep kneading this stuff is super sticky at this stage! Add the rest of the powdered sugar and knead some more. Re-grease your hands and counter when the fondant starts sticking.
If the mix is tearing easily, it is too dry, so add water (about 1/2 tablespoon at a time and then knead it in.) It usually takes me about 8 minutes to get a firm smooth elastic ball so that it will stretch without tearing when you apply it to the cake.
It is best if you can let it sit, double wrapped, overnight (but you can use it right away if there are no tiny bits of dry powdered sugar).
Prepare the fondant icing for storing by coating it with a good layer of Crisco shortening, wrap in a plastic type wrap product and then put it in a re-sealable or Ziploc bag. Squeeze as much air out as you possibly can.
MM Fondant icing will hold very well in the refrigerator for weeks. If I know that I have a cake to decorate, I usually make two (2) batches on a free night during the week so it is ready when I need it. Take advantage of the fact that this fondant icing can be prepared well in advance.