Welcome to the Cake Decorators Q&A
I'm still new at cake decorating and looking to buy a board, I noticed 'cake hole's' question re boards, has anyone got experience with The Mat, would that be a better buy for me or should I stick with the board, basically what I'm looking for is guidance as to wether I'm best going for a board or The Mat?
The Mat is specially formulated for use with food, not all plastic is food safe as they contain chemicals which can transfer into food.
I would personally stick to the board as it is used much more, you could buy a black non stick oven liner from Lakeland for rollling out icing or bacoglide do a non stick mat that is also excellent.
I have just order one so watch this space! I agree with Bev and start with a board! Mind you I still roll out fondant just on my work surface, no board, no mat. It has worked for me for nearly 40 years :0)
I bought the mat last year and have used it just the once. I found it very hard work rolling out the icing in between two sheets of plastic. It is however very useful for managing large amounts of rolled icing onto the cake. I don't use it all now, my granite work surface is much easier for rolling out and extra long rolling pin means easier lifting of icing onto cake. I had to try it though! Good luck with it if you decide on buying one.
I bought the mat last year as well. Tried it a couple of times and found it very difficult to roll out the fondant - hard work. Also, I found that contrary to what they say about it keeping dust particles etc off the fondant , it actually made matters worse. It's now in the garage collecting dust! I have the green board which I use most of the time, but still find that it also attracts particles. So I went back to using my worktop for rolling out and have got to say that it is so much better - no more particles. I wonder if it is anything to do with static?
Hi I'm also new to baking and I bought the mat straight away and Find it a whiz. I did notice that the sugar snagged one or twice but i just wiped it down and re-trexed it and it's been fine since. I also notice that if your sugar isn't kneeded well you may get holes in it as it's not smooth. Hope this helps. X
Thankyou all for your helpfull comments, not going to rush into a purchase yet!
I've used The Mat a few times now and have mixed feelings. It is definitely harder work rolling the fondant out than compared to a work surface.
However, I do like that I can take as long as I like to roll it out and not worry about the paste drying out - someone phoned me right in the middle of rolling out past last time and I could walk away and leave it without the paste drying out.
I also like that if I misjudge where to place the paste it does give me a second chance to easily lift it off and reposition it again.
It is a fiddle to keep it clean. When you peel off both sides and place aside whilst dealing with the cake it seems to attract every particle around. No matter how carefully I clean it when I come to roll out the next batch I find that there are pretty much always a few stray particles inside the mat and on top of my sugar paste.
Overall conclusion - if you are new to cake decorating and struggling with getting your fondant on before it dries and cracks then The Mat is worth a go. If you are confident with fondant then no, it isn't worth the extra hassle it brings.
Hi i have the mat and would not be with out it..i found it saves on time and money..if you go to the range on the fabric department you can buy a similar non stick plastic fabric for £1 per half a metre, i paid £23 for my mat and i find it does the same thing, its worth buying to save money.
Thank you Linda &Debbie for some more valuable information, Linda - is it just ordinary plastic sheeting from any fabric department????