Making those beautiful frosting cake decorations is an art; however, thanks to Marzipan even novices (like me) can try their hand at it. And yes, if it sounds German, chances are it is. Marzipan is German for Marchpane or March loaf. Modern day marzipan is known to have originated from German city of Lubeck.
Lubeck Marzipan is one of the finest in the world and is protected by EU’s PGI since 1996. It’s basically a thick almond paste made of sugar, almonds and almond oil. The texture reminds me a lot of the kajoo-barfi back home. Apart from its use in chocolates and icing Christmas cake, marzipan makes for a malleable easy to use medium for cake decorations.
I’ve grown up a fair bit since my childhood days of Disney character cakes and dinosaur cakes (Chocolate Stegosaurus anyone?).. Yet, I am still intrigued by hand modelled cake figurines. So a bridal shower for a friend meant I got to try my hand at making, ‘not so tiny’ Marzipan roses to decorate. Being my first attempt I didn’t expect a lot but I was happy with the finished product. The base cake was a simple chocolate sponge cake.
200g self raising flour (1 std size cup =110g flour)
200g sugar (1 std size cup = 200g sugar)
1.5 teaspoon Vanilla essence
40g cocoa powder
150 ml milk
1 teaspoon baking soda
1.5 tablespoon coffee mixed in 10 ml warm milk
Dark chocolate 200g
25-30g butter (optional)
1 teaspoon vanilla
Food colouring (red and green)
Pre-heat oven to 180 degree Celsius. Line the cake tin with baking paper or sprinkle oil and flour on bottom and sides.
Seive flour, sugar, and baking powder and mix with melted butter and milk.
In another bowl, whisk oil, egg, vannilla and coffee.
Mix the contents of the two bowls by whisking.
Fill the cake tin with batter and bake for 1 hour 10 minutes.
After the cake is baked, keep it aside to cool down and prepare for icing by melting chocolate, vanilla essence and butter and whisking it. Spread it on the cake with knife. Decorate with silver sugar balls and strawberries.
To make roses, break away marzipan and knead with sugar and food colour. Mould with hand to make the roses.
Ready to eat!