Francis Galton: wrong about eugenics, wrong about cake

Everyone knows exactly what they are talking about


I didn’t realise there was some sort of cake icing class war going on…

What’s so wrong with fondant anyhow? Lovely chewy sweet cake covering. Why all the hate?

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Perhaps you’re right and folks do know what ‘fondant’ means. My assumption, from all the stated dislike, was that people were confusing the (lovely) fondant with the (execrable) royal icing. Perhaps it’s just the case that they’re not ignorant, just deeply weird.

For anybody who’s nearby in East London, there’s a freshly made batch of homemade, fondant filled, peppermint cremes and homemade simulcra of Fry’s Five Centre bars to sample. It’s what I was finishing off making when I encountered this odd diatribe against both fondant and Francis Galton.

We always used to have disagreements around Christmas time when it came to icing the cake. Traditionally it looks something like this, with layers of marzipan and fondant/royal icing:

My mum’s Christmas cake is pretty famous and she still sends one to me every year wherever I am in the world - they’re made in October/early November and have survived well into late January where the post is late. The problem is, some people liked marzipan but not icing (which is not as sweet as frosting, but still kind of sickly), some liked it with both and some ate the plain cake by itself or with cheese (my grandfather was from Yorkshire, where eating fruit cake with cheese is a thing). In the end my mum just made a plain cake with slabs of cheese, icing and marzipan, which we could use like toppings on an open sandwich. Not very traditional, but it did keep the family together over the holiday season.

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My morning is better for having watched that video. I’m not even kidding.

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First off, professing enjoyment for fruit cake will make your tastes very suspect in Usian books. There is only one fruit cake, and it is mailed around the globe every year end. Secondly, if you think frosting can only be made with cream cheese, then you’ve been sadly misled. Lastly, frosting isn’t “pointless” it’s tasty, unlike fondant, which has the consistency and taste of, well, Plasticene (well said, Brain).


I lived in Southeast London, married an Englishman, have had more Cadbury creme eggs than most people have had hot dinners, work at a chocolate shop and am well versed in the world of confections. I know exactly what I meant when I said fondant on the video.

Forget all your silly cupcakes and give me some of this:

And if you must have something creamy on it, make it this.


You are painfully British. Also, cupcakes are kinda stupid. They’re too difficult to eat without making one look like Homer Simpson in the process. They don’t even deliver an optimal cake/frosting ratio. Nope, for that you need the corner of a square layer cake.


Hey, who’s that weird dude at the end? :wink:

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I was aiming for painfully Cornish :slight_smile:

Chacun à son goût!

I must say, @jsroberts’ mum’s Christmas cake looks exactly like my mum’s :slight_smile:


I find that if I lick the exposed cut every hour, the cake stays very ■■■■■.


I’m sure I’ve never tried “the good stuff” but just yesterday I tried some cake covered in a thick blue fondant coating, chewy like smurf hide, cloyingly sweet and stopping me from enjoying the nice chocolate cake hidden under there. I do not have a fond association between fondant and cake.
I mean, is it used for anything else?

I prefer a freshly whipped cream frosting on my cake, balances out a cake that might be too dry and on a nice ■■■■■ flavorful cake, can only enhance the experience.
And you can always enjoy whipped cream on anything. Its a thing of beauty all by itself.

I need cake… again.

there are good icings and crappy icings, there are good fondants and crappy fondants.

i don’t see how anyone can have a problem with good buttercream icing, but if you want something nice, try italian meringue (not really italian) icing; it kind of interpolates between icing and fondant. like fondant, it’s technically a candy, but the meringue keeps it fluffy. so good, especially flavored with lemon oil.


I have a cat that will do that for you…
I also have a dog that will solve the problem by making the problem go away.


Enjoying that right now – a co-worker just handed me a piece of cake with whip cream frosting!!!

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And then the marzipan should be covered with a thin layer of icing.

Not frosting. Certainly not fondant. Icing.

To be fair, it was probably pretty difficult for Francis Galton to obtain Saran wrap.

Icing is nothing more than sugar stuck together with lard, or some false approximation of the two. It amazes me that (some) people can actually survive eating it.

You can probably correlate the rising incidence of diabetes with the thickness of New York City cupcake shop icing.

Also, this.