Yeah!! Today is the day many of us have been waiting for since we learned the adorable Minions from Despicable Me will be landing in theaters on their own in a movie adequately named Minions. These creatures have swept the globe with their overly abundant cuteness! Is there a better way to properly celebrate their arrival than with sugar cookies decorated in their honor? I think not!
There were a few decisions that had to be made to successfully complete this project!
Fondant is something that I have found intriguing and appealing, yet I have not made the time to work with it. I once asked a cake decorating instructor about working with fondant and she mentioned that it was somewhat difficult to use and that the flavor of ready-made fondant was less than desirable. My 'thrifty' gene could not get past the price to even make it to tasting it. For what it is, pre-made fondant seems pricey.
DECISION 1: Make or buy? My inner frugal combined with my inner food snob guided me to make my own fondant. Go big or go home!
In studying fondant recipes, it seems there is a traditional recipe that includes gelatin and shortening and a second marshmallow-based recipe. From the reviews I read, it seems the marshmallow fondant has better flavor.
DECISION 2: Traditional or marshmallow? Again, my inner food snob prevails combined with my dislike of gelatin. Do you know how gelatin is made? That's a story for another time. Marshmallow it is! I know what you are thinking. Yes, I know gelatin is an ingredient in marshmallows, but if I don't actually see it it doesn't bother me. I am to first to admit that I have psychological issues around certain foods and certain food ingredients.
This leads me to another fork in my Minion Cookie Quest. The most popular method for marshmallow fondant calls for melting marshmallows with a bit of water in the microwave. This leaves me feeling deflated for a couple of reasons: first, because I do not have a glass bowl large enough to fit a small bag of marshmallows and we all know it isn't a great idea to stick a metal bowl in the microwave. Second, moisture isn't exactly a friend to fondant. If only there was an option of a readily melty marshmallow. Wait! There is! Marshmallow creme!
DECISION 3: Traditional marshmallows or marshmallow creme? Marshmallow creme fondant is my path to Minion Cookies! In addition to not needing to add water to the recipe, marshmallow creme does not contain gelatin. Score!
Once the fondant was prepared (recipe is below), I enlisted assistance from a 5th grader and an 8th grader for decorating the cookies. (They were willing participants, so no child labor laws were violated.)
In addition to yellow fondant, black food decorating pens, pre-made eyes, silver spray for goggles and buttercream frosting for glue was used.
It is my personal view that use of a stand mixer is imperative for making fondant. I love my stand mixer because it does most of the work for me! Most of the recipes I saw had a lot of hand kneading. I can't imagine working so hard.
- 2 7-ounce (198 g) jars marshmallow creme
- food coloring gel (use the color and amount to suit personal preference)
- 1 tablespoon flavor (more or less to suit personal preference)
- 2 lb (907 g) confectioners powdered cane sugar (you likely will not use the entire bag)
- baking / cooking spray (or shortening)
- Thoroughly spray mixing bowl, dough hook, rubber scraper and any other sufrace that will be touching the fondant or marshmallow creme.
- Place marshmallow creme in mixing bowl and add color and flavor. Blend with dough hook until well combined.
- Add 5 1/2 cups powdered sugar with dough hook until well combined. Continue adding powdered sugar if necessary until the proper fondant consistency has been achieved.
- Prior to use, additional powdered sugar may be needed to knead into the fondant to achieve the proper consistency for rolling.
- Roll to desired thickness and cut to desired shape.
- Adhere to cookie with a thin layer of buttercream icing.
A couple of notes:
Clear flavorings are recommended. Vanilla is traditionally a dark brown and may give an off color to your fondant.
Since I was using only one color, I added color to the marshmallow creme. You could make a batch of white fondant and then knead in the color, but be prepared to put in a lot of extra work!
When rolling fondant, I used a sheet of wax paper sprinkled with powdered sugar. I sprayed the rolling pin with baking spray which prevented the fondant from sticking and it also gave the top of the fondant a nice sheen.