This is Part 2 of the Royal Christmas Cake. The cake aging in a dark place for at least 20 days and Christmas is now fast approaching. The recipe calls for adding the marzipan armor some 5 to 7 days before Christmas so it can harden. This is then followed by an application of the Royal Icing on the day before Christmas.
A Coat of Jam before adding the Marzipan
Just before adding the marzipan, I recommend poking the cake a bit with a fork, ice pick or knife and adding a little more brandy to moisten it up. Use a bit of jam (apricot is preferred) to coat the surface of the cake before adding the marzipan.
Consider using Waitrose Golden Marzipan (Sainsbury is also fine) to make your almond paste. Marzipan that can be rolled into the form to cover the top and sides is also available in US grocery stores. Use about 1 ½ – 2lbs of marzipan (imported from Waitrose) to cover the cake before covering with Royal Icing. This is applied about a week before finishing up with the royal icing.
Royal Christmas Cake – Part 2
Almond Paste Ingredients or Marzipan:
- 6 ounces castor sugar
- 6 ounces icing sugar
- 12 ounces ground almonds
- 4 egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/4 teaspoon almond essence
Ingredients for the Royal Icing
- 3 egg whites
- 1 1/4 pound icing sugar
- 1 1/4 teaspoon glycerine
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
Preparation of Almond Paste
- Mix sugars and ground almonds. Form into a pliable paste with the egg yolks beaten with lemon juice and essence. Knead lightly until smooth and free of cracks.
- Brush top and sides of the cake with melted golden syrup or with two rounded tablespoons apricot jam, melted and sieved (optional).
- Cover neatly with almond paste and put cake aside in a cool place for 4 days to a week till the paste hardens.
Preparation for Royal Icing
- Lightly whisk egg whites, then add sugar a little at a time, beating well till icing is smooth and stiff enough to form small peaks.
- Stir in glycerine and lemon juice. Spread icing thickly over top and sides of cake smoothing with a palette knife dipped from time to time in hot water and shaken dry.
- Leave icing a couple of days to harden before decorating.