If you watched the first episode of this year’s Great British Bake Off last night, you probably still have a few questions going round your head, like, “Will karma come for Sura for knocking Dave’s pineapple upside down cakes over?”, “Why did none of the celebrity cakes have necks?”, and “Why does everyone hate Battenberg so much?”
I am personally, a huge fan of Battenberg. But not many of this year’s bakers seemed that enamoured with it, and in particular, the marzipan coating.
But, if you like many other viewers found yourself wondering what marzipan actually is, allow us to explain…
What is marzipan?
Marzipan is a sweet, cream-coloured paste, whose main ingredient is ground almonds. The ground almonds are mixed with sugar and egg whites, and sometimes almond essence, to make marzipan.
Marzipan is often used to coat cakes, including Battenberg and Christmas cakes (a layer goes on before the hard, white icing). It’s also used in the delicious German Christmas cake, stollen. So yeah, it gets used a lot during the festive season.
Marzipan is very nice when covered in dark chocolate too, plus, you've probably heard of marzipan fruits, which are delicious and adorable.
Marzipan is actually pretty easy to make, despite what you might think.
- 300g ground almonds
- 100g caster sugar
- 350g icing sugar
- 2 egg whites
- A few drops of almond essence if you like it rally almond-y
How to make marzipan
- Put all the ingredients except the egg whites into a food processor and pulse until the mixture comes together into a fine powder. Gently add the egg white and whizz the whole lot together until it comes together.
- Dust a work surface with some icing sugar, then tip the marzipan dough out. Gently bring it together with your hands until it makes a smooth dough. You don’t want it to be sticky at this point, so you may need to add more icing sugar.
- Then simply roll the marzipan out; ready to cover your cake.
Now go forth and show those Bake Off contestants how it’s done!
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