I've made a lot of cowboy themed cakes and many, many of them have had a bandana knot on them (see the links and pics at the end of this post). Almost every time I've posted one of those cakes, I get asked about making the knot and finally... I took pics!
One quick question... is it bandana or bandanna? I always write with one "n" but my spell-check keeps trying to correct me! What do you think?
I looked it up in the Merrium-Webster dictionary and apparently two "n's" is correct but I did find in the alternate spellings near the bottom that one "n" is okay too.
Ugh... I say it's one "n" - so that's what you're gonna get from me for the rest of this post. Okay? Okay!
So here it is... How to Make a Fondant Bandana Knot! This post is going to be long so I'm going to skip my usual rambling and get straight to it! Here's what you'll need:
- A prepared cake. For this cake it was an 8" chocolate cake, frosted and filled with chocolate buttercream.
- Enough fondant to cover the cake and do the decorations. I used approximately 2 pounds of homemade marshmallow fondant for this 8" round cake, but it really depends on how thick/thin you roll your fondant.
- Fondant smoothers
- Corn starch
- Pizza Wheel or Pastry Wheel (I love this one by Duff!!) or in this tutorial I'm using this Non-stick Wheel by Chicago Metallic.
- Tear Drop Cutters
- Sugar Glue
And if you want to finish the pattern...
- Black and white fondant for the paisleys
- Black food marker
- Comma Cutters
- Other random small shapes (star or flower... I've used different ones for different cakes. I love this Mini Cutter Set)
Here's my cake. It was thoroughly chilled and ready to go:
Step 1: Roll out your fondant (I use The Mat) to the appropriate diameter to cover your cake and lay it over the top! This also works much easier if you have your cake on a turntable. My favorite is this Ateco #613 turntable.
Step 2: Using your fondant smoothers, smooth down the fondant around the back on either sides of the cake - leaving it loose on the front (or wherever you want the knot).
I couldn't put my smoothers on the cake while simultaneously taking a picture, so you'll just have to use your imagination.
And here's the front (with it smoothed all around the sides and back:
Step 3: Begin slowly pulling the loose fondant together and gathering it near the bottom, while gently stretching and smoothing it:
I use my smoothers to pull it in tight... and get it clean! At this point I realized I really wanted some pics with my hands, so I asked my son to come help me out!
Step 4: When it's like you want it, tear off the excess fondant and smooth it down a bit - that will not be your knot! 😉
I used an Xacto knife to take off a little more of the excess...
Step 5: Using your Pastry Wheel (or whatever tool you prefer), cut off the excess fondant around the edges of the cake. I like to cut as close to I can straight up and down (see second pic below) - not angling in at all. It makes that bottom edge smooth!
Now here you're going to have to use your imagination. I had forgotten that I really wanted a wood grain finish on the cake board so I had to take care of that. However, I didn't take pics.
When it was attached, I used a wood grain mat to add texture! I put the seam directly under the knot because I knew it would be covered up!
Now back to the bandana!!
Step 6: Roll out some extra fondant... this was probably 6 inches by 8 inches. You won't really need that much!
Step 7: Cut out 3 strips (ignore that there are only 2 below) - each about an inch wide. I don't measure these things and it's a little different every time, but there's no need for precision, so it's all good! Roll one into a ball - around 1" diameter!
I check it against the cake to be sure it's a good size. You can add or take away until to get a good size - just know that you'll be adding more strips on the outside in a minute, so the finished product will be a little bigger than the ball is now!
Step 8: Cut two strips of fondant. Fold one in half length wise and leave the other as-is. First lay the flat one over the ball, then the folded one over that. Once they're both lined up, just fold them around and pinch off the excess. Smooth it down to have a finished knot. Check out the pics below if I've confused you. I'm sure I have.
Step 9: Using a Tear Drop Cutter, cut out two tails for the knot and pinch them together on the rounded ends... (If you don't have the tear drop cutters, you could easily free-hand this - again, there's no need for sharp precision!)
Step 10: Use some sugar glue to attach them to the front of the cake.
Step 11: Glue the knot onto the front and you're done!!
And the knot is done!!
I didn't take pictures of finishing it up, but it wasn't hard at all! I used nesting Comma Cutters to do a few different sizes of black and white paisleys.
OH, and I added the black ribbon around the board to cover up the rough edges!
I also used that little curved square cutter to add one more shape... not sure what it's called but it's from this Mini Cutter Set. If you don't like that, you could add tiny flowers like I did on this recent Cowgirl Horse Cake. And you could add silver edible pearls for a little bling... see here:
Anywho... I digress! This is the finished cake:
Do you have any questions about making a fondant bandana knot? If so, leave me a comment and I'll do my best to answer!!