Chocolate modeling clay is useful for decorating cakes that require modeled figures or sculpted pieces. Sometimes called candy clay, modeling chocolate makes edible creations for topping novelty cake designs.
Edible Modeling Dough
Chocolate modeling clay has the consistency of clay used in crafts, much like the fun dough children have played with for decades. The recipe for the clay is usually only two ingredients, corn syrup and chocolate, usually in the form of chocolate candy melts, disks, or bars.
This edible dough is frequently compared to sculpting fondant. While fondant does not usually have a very good flavor, modeling chocolate is usually decent tasting to most--although not everyone chooses to eat the creations.
Modeling dough makes 3D cake figures, although it also rolls out for making cutouts and other flat shapes that adhere to the top of a cake. Figures frequently appear in scenes on a large cake, as characters on a birthday cake or even as bride and groom wedding cake toppers.Other shapes chocolate candy clay makes include:
- Licensed characters
If your modeling and sculpting skills are lacking, decorating supplies such as chocolate molds will help you form the figure needed. Simply press the dough into the mold and allow it to rest until the shape forms. Depending on the mold, you may also be able to place the dough into the mold for shaping before it cools.
Chocolate modeling clay is frequently made of chocolate cocoa bars. However, you can pick up colored candy disks to make modeling clay, or use white chocolate and then a powdered dye to tint to the color of your choice. Some decorators choose to paint white chocolate after the figures have hardened.
Make Modeling Clay
Making chocolate modeling dough is relatively easy with the right recipe. Unlike buttercream frosting and fondant icing, the modeling clay is not mean to cover entire cakes. Instead, the recipes are for use with making figures, shapes and other adornments for cakes.
If you do not want to make the modeling clay yourself, consider purchasing a modeling chocolate kit, like those available from Confection Crafts. A kit often includes tools and helpful instructions for beginners.
Chocolate Modeling Clay Tips
Working with any new edible medium is difficult for beginners. Once you have the right recipe, you can begin your work. Follow these tips for making the most out of this modeling medium:
- After making the modeling clay, allow it to cool and harden before kneading it to a malleable consistency.
- If the modeling clay is too hard, try adding a little extra corn syrup or a few drops of water until the dough is correct.
- Use cornstarch or cocoa powder if you roll the clay out onto a surface to keep it from sticking. Wax paper also helps keep the clay from sticking to the counter.
- If the clay is too sticky, knead cornstarch or cocoa powder into the dough, a small amount at a time.
- The modeling clay will heat up with handling, so keep the area chilled. Place warm dough in the refrigerator for a few moments if you need to continue working with it. Otherwise, store the clay in an airtight container.
Modeling clay figures are usually small figures added as accents to a larger cake. However, some people might choose to make a large figure out of modeling chocolate. A larger figure requires stable internal supports. Support the figure by doing one of the following ideas:
- Mold the clay around a basic wire figure of the shape you are trying to make. This works best for small-to-medium sized figures.
- Build the figure base with dowels and rice cereal marshmallow bars. The rice cereal bars add fullness without weight to the chocolate figure. Form chocolate clay around the cereal bars into the needed shape. This is a common technique of professional cake decorators use for large cake figures.
Remember to tell your guests and those who are consuming the cake where any non-edible clay figures are located.
Chocolate candy clay is a great medium for making figures for cake decorating. It is a pliable dough that lends itself to many fun cake designs.