Topic Title: My Gum Paste is Hard as a Rock! Created On Saturday January 29, 2011 1:48 PM
Posted: Saturday January 29, 2011 1:48 PM
I just bought a package of Wilton Gum Paste, and sadly it is hard as a rock! The instructions on the back say to "break off" the amount that I want to use, which makes it sound like the gum paste is hard, but still pliable. I'm strong, but not the hulk, I just can't get a piece to break off. I tried banging it against the marble counter in the kitchen, using the edge of the counter to snap/break it in half, and nothing happened but a huge headache. I ended up using a serrated steak knife to saw off a corner of the "brick". Once I had the piece broken off, I needed to knead it so I could work with it, and after about 10 minutes of holding the piece in my hands hoping the warmth/moisture would soften it, the piece was still just as hard as when I started. What am I doing wrong? How do I get the gum paste to soften? I didn't think the gum paste was any good when I bought it, but when I checked the other packages on the shelf, they were all equally as hard. I appreciate any help you guys have to offer, clearly I'm a newbie, but thus far I'm loving everything else that I've attempted, so I'm inclined to think the problem is with me and not the product, but I'm getting so frustrated I just don't know who else to turn to.
Return it. It is common for the top edge of the gumpaste in the package to be rock hard but the other 95% should be nice and pliable - (firm but still kneadable) - I usually just crumble the dry edge and use it for making my gum glue adhesive. Squeeze the packages - you should be able to make a thumb impression or feel some give in the center. If not it sounds like the store may have old stock or had packages that got punctured somehow.
Return it. Gum paste should be knead- able, like Play-Doh. Sometimes the top of the package will be hard but the rest of it should be nice and soft. What I usually do is gently squeeze each package and buy the softest one.
I was just at my local WalMart for the first time in years and found they have moved half of their Wilton section to over by the magazines and trading cards nearest the cash register -- why? But I was thrilled to see my beloved gumpaste product on the shelf, and at such a low price, so I grabbed a bag and gave it an affectionate squeeze. Yikes. It was like concrete. (You know how it feels when you hug somebody and it turns out they are not a hugger? That's how I felt! Embarrassed!) Now, I don't know how many people shop for gumpaste at that store, if they could even find it, but it seems like this product ought to come with an expiration date instead of just a meaningless code. Wilton must realize by now that there is a serious problem with the way it is marketed since so many consumers have problems with it right off the shelf. I think an inexperienced gumpaste person might think, oh, it is just hard like this when you buy it but after you knead it, it will get nice and soft, but gumpaste that has hardened all the way through (not just the top edge, which I just slice off and save for making gum glue) is not going to turn into the silky, sensitive modeling compound we know it should be no matter what you do to it. The product is expensive and the fondant class requires more than one bag if you are going to practice at home. Wouldn't it be better to merchandise the gumpaste the same way the fondant is packaged? At WalMart, I noticed that half their Wilton supplies are in what is left of the craft aisle and half are behind the magazines and next to the baseball cards, near the exit. I thought maybe the gumpaste was just cold, but that shouldn't be a problem because I ordered a bag of gumpaste online in January and it was soft and pliable, ready to use, even though it had been sitting in a box on my porch for a couple of hours.