Monday, June 8, 2009

Misunderstanding Rush Lyrics and Poured Fondant

What a freakin' letdown. All these years I've thought Rush had a great song about Space Invaders, and now that I've bothered to flex the internets, I'm forever disapointed. I hate you Tom Sawyer!

Anyway, I've wanted to try frosting cupcakes with poured fondant since before King Kong first began shimmming up New York architecture, and yesterday's Totally Vegan Potluck brought me the very opportunity I've been waiting for--goodbye Cinderella Complex and hello ball Cyclops Cupcakes.
space invaders I
We've been damp armpit deep in the 90s for a few weeks already, and believe it or not, I'm not masochistic enough to attempt transporting buttercream covered objects right now. Except of course, under the direst of circumstances, or if someone asks politely with big batting eyes and wads of cash, or lots of banana bubble tea. While one might and possibly should consider a Science Fiction themed vegan potluck dire, really, it's not quite the burning emergency it might have been pre-Federal Levee Failure, is it? See, the great thing about poured fondant is that it's pretty indestructible. Once set, it forms a shell stronger than Texas sized palmetto bugs, and better yet, it doesn't melt--perfect for slammin' around in the car en route to wherever it is I'm headed in this fire o' hell.
It seems most poured fondant recipes on the webs are vegan, and most of the ones I've found give good directions for how to make the actual fondant, but zero directions for how to apply the paste, because once boiled and processed, it sets up into a semi solid mass.

My plan for the potluck, was also solid, and I could not be swayed--Nuclear Winter-Proof Cyclops Space Invader Cupcakes. First, I made a batch of banana cake from pakupaku, but poured the batter into cupcakes instead (the recipe will yield 24, but watch that time, they really only need to bake for about 25 minutes). Then I stuck my finger into each cake and made a hole, a la VCTOTW, filled each hole with some peanut butter buttercream I piled into a pastry bag, and then spread the top of each with a swab of strawberry jam--don't go globbing it on, all that's needed is just a thin delicate swipe.

Next, I bundled my armpit hair into adorable homemade hairnets (for food safety) and eagerly began my poured fondant and evil eye adventure. I used the recipe from and followed it to a capital T, but at the end if you've done it right, you end up with an "opaque paste" that is supposed to be sealed into a plastic ziplock for 24 hours. Not what I wanted, with the TVP loomin' around my afternoon.
space invaders II
Using a heat-proof spatula, I scraped the stuff into a heat-proof bowl and placed it on a small makeshift double boiler over low heat and had myself a little heat-proof-hoe-down. Then I very carefully reheated it, added just a few tablespoons of hot water and stirred it like a maniac, until it relaxed into a nice viscosity for dipping. Don't be jealous, you can use the word viscosity, too. Go ahead, just keep it within context. Each cupcake was then dipped into this magic liquid, and lo! Almost immediately a sturdy crust was formed. If you have enough fondant (I'd recommend making 1.5 times the above linked recipe for 24 cupcakes), you can double dip them for perfection--looks more perfect and soooOOoo firm. Once the fondant is set (within mere moments) you can continue to decorate them however you like. For me, I couldn't quit tapping on them, it's a miracle I even got them showcased and out of the house. The fondant has the taste and texture of a very light praline or penuche. Also, if you use unbleached sugar like I did, the color will not beat white. Mine stayed a light beige, which I tinted into a mucus green for party effectiveness.
To create Space Invaders, each dipped cupper was adorned with a strip of scalloped fruit leather, some confectioner's glaze-free sprinkles, fig/blueberry cross sections for the alien irises and tinted buttercream for the details. Fun-fun-fun. If you make and share these, please don't forget to force everyone to tap their finger on top of the fondant. It's important to get some fuss over their crunchy tops.

Oh and P.S.
Emily, you've won Peta's latest cookbook, please email your snail mail contact info to me at kittee68 at yahoo dot come, and I'll send it out as soon as possible.



  1. Kittee, you never cease to amaze me!

  2. SO cool, Kittee! Really, you just dipped 'em?!

  3. Oh, summer is so much fun, isn't it? I just love melting all the time. :) But your cupcakes! Ah! So rockin'!

  4. Wow Kittee! First, having this level of motivation in nasty Louisiana summer heat is admirable! I'm barely boiling pasta. Secondly, wow! Your creativity and mad cupcake skills are amazing! Stay cool, ma'am!!

  5. I love your space invader cupcakes!! It is getting a bit warm down here for buttercream... poured fondant is the perfect solution!

  6. Cuteness! I love the look of fondant, but have yet to work with it. The creativity of your culinary adventures never ceases to amaze me.

  7. Those are some mad decorating skills!

  8. those cupcakes look amazing.

  9. eye heart those cupcakes. i also love rush. i read a really good article about him in heeb magazine. his real name is gary, and he got the name geddy from a friend in school who would imitate his mom's polish accent calling him gary. get it? "come heer geddy". interesting factoid indeedy.

  10. I had one and it was the most delicious and beautiful thing EVER. I guessed everything but the strawberry jam! How did I miss that. Amazing. I told Alice about them 4 times yesterday and she helpfully reminded me that I had already told her but 4 times was enough.

  11. Why, oh why, did you have to say Texas size palmetto bugs? You've got me having traumatic flashbacks.

    Those cupcakes are so undeniably awesome!

  12. Although Canadian...never a Rush fan. I hate Tom Sawyer too. Probably for different reasons.
    Love those cupcakes! You are amazing!

  13. I have never fondanted, maybe one day.

    On the other hand, I use the word "viscosity" often, and always in context!

  14. These are stellar! I've been feeling the need to get both my cupcake and creativity on lately, and this was just the ticket!

    Rock on!

  15. I <3 your space invaders. And it's easy to misinterpret Rush lyrics.

  16. thanks for visiting me blog:) oh and really thankyou for your kind words regarding my grandmother's health.
    I've actually known about your blog for some time now and I love it. Everything you make not only looks delicious, but also creative
    Takee caree

  17. Oh my gosh these look AMAZING. I love vegan cupcakes to death.
    And by the way, I added your blog to my links! Feel free to check it out anytime, it's relatively new as of yet though :)

  18. Oh Kittee, I'm still addicted to your page!!! Just to let you know, I've just added Mother Gem's Cratf talk video on my blog as well!!! I LOVE IT!
    Thanks for the magical moments I spend reading you!

  19. Those look great! I've been wanting to give poured fondant a go for a while (petit fours!). You have given me the courage I need!

  20. will you and your armpit fur come bake for me?

  21. Those sprinkle eyeballs are fabulous. I'm inspired.

    And thanks for linking to Leslie Hall. I think I spent an hour watching videos on there. It made my insides squishy it was so awesome.


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