Hopefully you have made my Christmas cake (with some chocolate added) and I will now explain how to marzipan and ice the cake.
I like to use royal icing as I think this is much nicer than fondant icing - it sets hard and has a much nicer meringue-like taste.
The traditional way to make royal icing is to use egg whites but some people are concerned about using raw eggs, and therefore meringue powder is a suitable substitute which is what I use on my cake. I have however included both recipes below.
To watch a video showing you to how to marzipan and ice the cake please watch the video below:
First marzipan the cake. I have used ready rolled shop-bought marzipan but if you want to make your own marzipan you can see my recipe in my Battenburg cake recipe. Warm two tablespoons of apricot jam and then pass through a sieve. Brush this all over the top and sides of the cake and then put the marzipan on the top and carefully flatten around the sides. If you have an icing smoother use this to help smooth the marzipan and cut the marzipan where there are folds.
Royal icing using egg whites
2 egg whites
1tsp lemon juice
500g icing sugar
Mix the lemon juice with the egg whites in a large bowl and add a quarter of the icing sugar and mix well using an electric whisk or wooden spoon. Keep adding the rest of the icing sugar a quarter at a time and mix each time. The mixture will become thick and spreadable.
Royal icing using meringue powder
3 tablespoons meringue powder
500g icing sugar
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
120ml - 180ml warm water
Sieve the icing sugar into a large bowl and mix in the meringue powder. Then mix the lemon juice and vanilla extract into the water and add most of the water to the icing sugar. Start mixing together with a spoon and then use an electric whisk to mix the icing for a fe minutes. The icing will become glossy and thick - so that if you turn the bowl upside down it won't fall out. Add more water is required.
As soon as the icing is mixed start by spreading it on the top of the cake with a pallette knife and then cover the sides until all the marzipan is completely covered and you have a nice thick layer of icing. You may want to smooth the icing completely or create a 'snowy' effect or pipe more icing.
Once covered leave to set - it will take a few days to completely harden and keep the cake is an airtight tin until Christmas!