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hi, 1st time using marzipan.  Do i cover my cake with buttercream before putting on the marzipan or leave it bare.  Will be covering the marzipan with fondant.  not sure what i do here.  My cake decorating book doesn't cover with buttercream, but not sure what to do here HELP!

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Why may I ask are you covering the cake in BOTH marzipan and fondant??  My opinion is it should really be one or the other as it will be awfully sweet with both, not to mention the extra expense of two coverings.  My Mom was Scottish, and Brits don't use buttercream, but marmalade on the cake 1st when using marzipan.  Let marmalade dry slightly, then on goes the marzipan. It would stick to the marmalade.  I have covered a cake in marzipan, but I used buttercream underneath. As with fondant, not everyone likes it, so it may not be eaten.  Another expense seeing it is being thrown away.

If you are going to use marzipan only, buy a the best quality you can afford, the cheap stuff is very sticky and hard to work with.  Good marzipan can be expensive.

Hope this helps

thanx June.  I don't normally eat fruit cake, but made this cake for my mums birthday as it's one of her fav cakes.  A few weeks ago a friend made a wheat and gluten free fruit cake (as i try to keep to this way of eating) and it had marzipan and fondant on, and am sure thats what all fruit cakes over here has on it.  i don't normally put marzipan on cakes, cos as you said not every1 likes it, but know my mum likes it and as its for her,so i put it on.  thanx for getting back to me anyway. x

 

Amanda, I have an old Wilton cake book (really old hard back wedding cake book dated 1984) and it has several cakes that have been covered in the marzipan and fondant together. First, they filled in any holes in the fruit cake with bits of marzipan, then they covered the fruit cake with apricot jam that has been slightly heated. They rolled out the marzipan to about 3/4 of an inch thick, and placed it on the cake just as you would fondant. Once it has been smoothed out and trimmed, it has been left it to dry over night so that the oils from the marzipan would not soak out onto the fondant. After the marzipan has dried, then they applied apricot jam that has been slightly heated over the marzipan, then rolled out the fondant and placed it over the marzipan and finished decorating the cake as you would any fondant cake. If you have never made marzipan from total scratch, I do have a really good recipe, although it is not nearly as finely ground as almond paste, but still will form your fruits and roll out nicely. I use one package of almond flour found in the health food section of our food stores, add two to three tablespoons of almond flavored coffee syrup, and two tablespoons of amaretto flavored coffee syrup, one egg white, one teaspoon of almond extract and enough powdered sugar to form a very stiff dough. It yields so much more marzipan than if you buy the almond paste, and in the long run is much much cheaper than purchasing almond paste and making your marzipan from that. By the way, the pictures in this Wilton book of the marzipan and fondant covered fruit cakes are decorated in the Australian method and are absolutely stunning.

Geez  Amanda

I should have checked where u were from!! Dah!!!!!  From Fife, Scotland....you would know abou this stuff.  I was going to say in my original message that it traditionally goes on fruitcake. There are mostly American's on this site and they don't know much about marzipan.  I see Linda's post above, and never thought there would be a concise recipe for homemade marzipan.

So you about 3 hours from where my Mom was from.  Stranraer.  Haven't been there yet, but just retired and anxious to go to Scotland, & UK where I have one cousin left from my Mom's family.

June, I had to figure out how to make my own recipe since I have all of George's family and our grandchildren and daughter who all love marzipan. It is funny. Neither one of George's sisters make any of the foods from Germany where they all came from originally, and his mom has passed away, so I am the only one who carries the German tradition with the cooking and baking! And, they all love that I do! So, we have wiener schnitzel, and jaeger  schnitzel, red cabbage, poppy seed cakes, stollen, and rouladen (I hate rouladen). To me, it's important for the grandchildren to know their roots.
Well, when Steve's Mom was in her early 80's, I thought I better pick her brain for her Polish recipes as they were all in her head.  I made a recipe book for all my niece's...Cherished Family Recipes...and added other recipes from sis-in-laws, their Mother's.  It was a huge hit, and the niece's still look forward to new recipes I give them every Polish Christmas Eve.
ye june, about 3 hrs from stranraer.  Only passed through it going to the ferry port in stranraer, as i lived in ireland for 5 yrs and we would drive home and take the ferry.  So it was just a fleeting glance. 

June Kowalczyk said:

Geez  Amanda

I should have checked where u were from!! Dah!!!!!  From Fife, Scotland....you would know abou this stuff.  I was going to say in my original message that it traditionally goes on fruitcake. There are mostly American's on this site and they don't know much about marzipan.  I see Linda's post above, and never thought there would be a concise recipe for homemade marzipan.

So you about 3 hours from where my Mom was from.  Stranraer.  Haven't been there yet, but just retired and anxious to go to Scotland, & UK where I have one cousin left from my Mom's family.

thanx for all the advice everyone.  Cake turned out great after all.  The marzipan went on well and put white fondant on top of it, then decorated it with pretty fondant flowers and butterflies.  My mum seemed chuffed with it.  Will post a photo of it over the weekend, as photos on my mobile phone and had bit of problem with phone, but should be sorted out by 2moro. xxx
lol, Amanda, I can literally hear your accent in my head from how you type. I've never heard the word chuffed, and am assuming that means tickled pink in my American slang. Can't wait to see the pics!
Oh Amanda
Haven't heard that expression in awhile. Chuffed. And yes Linda, it means happy, pleased. Just like you Git, means your an idiot, Ha! Ha! I miss all my Mom's colloquialisms, like...Hells Bells, Hells Teeth, I don't give a tupnee hoot. Aye, me Mum was grand lassie

Covering a cake in buttercream before sugarpasting the cake is a purely American thing to do.

 

When Americans discovered Sugarpaste [aka rolled fondant which has deteriorated down to "fondant" the name of which is already taken by another product], they loved the "look", but hated the taste and texture. Because customers peeled the offending sugarpaste off, cake decorators felt duty bound to provide them with an "under-icing" to cover the now-naked cake. Buttercream under sugarpaste came into being .. double iced cakes ...

 

Marzipan was/is used as an undercoat. It protects the sugarpaste or royal icing from moisture, colours and oils rising from the fruitcake. Once applied, it is dried before the outer coat is applied. Sieved jam, sugar syrup or boiled water is used to attach the marzipan to the cake, and the same is used to attach the outer coating to the marzipan.

 

With today's newer formulations of sugarpaste, marzipan may be omitted. A thin layer of sugarpaste may be used in it's place: covered by a thicker outlayer.

 

Today's trend in AU decorating is ganache over mudcake, butter cake etc covered with sugarpaste. [Ganache is never applied to fruitcake.]

Growing up with a Scottish Mom, I always helped her make fruitcake @ Christmas.  I hated it then, but love it now. I have her great-grandmother's recipe, that hopefully one day I will give a shot at making.

Anyway, she always covered her fruitcake with apricot jam, it dried, & then, like you said marzipan.  Of course the cake was wrapped with cheesecloth soaked in rum 1st, in our case, apple juice.  I still think that marzipan is superior to fondant in every way, but there are still a lot of people that still don't like it. And in Canada, even making marzipan from scratch is $$$$,  so kind of wasteful if it is being thrown away.  And you are also right that the Brits invented "fondant", only the correct name as you say, is sugarpaste.  When I took lessons when my children were small, my daughter is now 31, I took them from a British women who had her own cake shop.  So probably 24 or so years ago, and she was using her own form of sugar paste even then.  It hadn't quite caught on, as buttercream & royal icing were still King. She was one of those decorators who was ahead of her time. I often wonder if she is even still alive.  She was 60ish, like me, so she would be in her early 80's.  I am ashamed to say, I can't even remember her name.

And ganache with sugarpaste/fondant over top sounds a little sickening sweet to me, but that is just me.  And yuk, no you would never, never put ganache over fruitcake.  Man, just talking about this makes me want a slice of my Mom's cake!!!

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