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Welcome to the Cake Decorators Q&A

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asked May 18th 2012

Arista Soft Modelling Paste

I was really interested in this product and it has got really good reviews.  However, I have read that it should not not come into contact with icing or fondant.  Is the reason for this because it is non-edible ?  Has anyone used this product?

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I was really interested in this product and it has got really good reviews.  However, I have read that it should not not come into contact with icing or fondant.  Is the reason for this because it is non-edible ?  Has anyone used this product?

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Hi Susan

It is called Artista soft.  I am pretty sure it can come into contact with cake as a flower (but models need a plaque).  Evelyn the uk distributor is very helpful if you drop her an email at

http://www.artistasoft.co.uk/contact.html

There are also demos on you tube of this product.  I have used the deluxe Artista Soft but have only coloured it with their hearty coloured pigments.

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Thanks Jayess, I have emailed the question to the company and will post when I hear from them.  As for touching the cake I don’t see the difference between a flower being allowed to contact the cake but not a model??  After all it is all the same product.  Unless the flower is wired and inserted into the cake with a pick?

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Hi Susan

I seem to remember it is something to do with how much of the product touches the cake.  A spray of flowers would only touch in places but a model would touch over quite an area.  It is something to do with the Artista paste ‘melding’ into the sugarpaste.  The main ingredients are potato and rice flour.  I have copied the following from the site and hope it helps as you may miss it by not scrolling down

Can CAKE DECORATORS use ARTISTA SOFT?
Artista Soft can be used exactly as your icing based pastes. However you will find there is a learning curve with the paste as it is a much softer and wetter paste than flowerpaste. All you have to remember is that when working with it meld a little “Nivea Creme” or “Trex” Into it, and if too sticky to use just leave in the aIr to dry a little. Remember that Artista Soft contains It own glue so will stick to everything but your hands, so rub your rolling pin, cutters and veiners over your greased hand. Cutout say ten pieces of your petals, then go back and ball or cocktail stick them. You can leave the paste a lot longer uncovered than you can icing based pastes.
You can if you wish use dust colours, glycerine paste colours or food colouring but you will only obtain pale colouring as Artista Soft is an opaque paste you need to insert such a lot of colouring to get it a deep colour that you will destroy the texture of the paste. So for deep reds, violet tones we recommend that you use the Artista Soft/Hearty colours. Remember Artista Soft is a non-edible paste and although the contamination between cake and the decoration is not a problem, but because you cannot cut through it when dry you cannoteat it. Use for decoration purposes only. Dried cake can accept a dry wired spray straight onto the cake, otherwise put sprays in a pick or container. Do not put block modelled object direct onto the cake, (the Icing and the Artista Soft meld together and crystallize) Make a small plaque or covered board. You can dust powder colours on when dry, steam – then glaze with Confectioner’s glaze. (FuII Glaze)

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Ah, right, thanks for that Jayess.  So it’s not really about contamination, more about how the ingredients react to each other!  Interesting.  What do you think of it then?  How do you think it compares to sugarpaste or modelling paste?  Did you find it easier to work with and does it give better results?

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Hi Jayess, I got an answer back from Artista Soft.  Basically saying that the reason a flower spray can be put on cake directly is because air can circulate.

” Where there is a wired spray and a dried cake there
           are no contamination issues.  The air circulates between the flowers keeping it dry.
          where you have a model laying flat and there is no air going
          this would keep the icing wet, but not harmful.
          so you are advised to put this model on a little plaque
          or seal well with full confectioners glaze.

       The paste has no toxins or resins so no harmful contamination
       but keeps the icing wet underneath on a block item only”

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Hi Susan, I use both mediums.  There is a breakage issue with flowerpaste though but I am more used to using and colouring it.  I am soon going to try modelling a figure with Artista soft.  Will let you know how I get on.