Most people eat fruit cakes around Christmas time.
They’re made using dried fruits, and some people use sherry or brandy to enhance the flavor.
Decorating your fruit cake can be an excellent way to get into the Christmas spirit or be in the mood for a birthday party.
But can you ice a fruit cake without marzipan? Are there any other decoration options available?
We’ll answer this question in our article, so keep reading.
You don’t have to be an expert chef to ice a fruit cake. Most beginners can successfully ice a fruit cake and make it look unique in no time.
Marzipan is a sweet confectionary paste made from almonds. It’s pretty common in British baking recipes, but it’s also found in German and French cuisines.
Some people use marzipan under the fondant layer, but you don’t have to do this.
You can use apricot jam instead, but the result might not always be satisfactory.
Fruit cakes tend to be lumpy, so this lumpiness might show through if you don’t use marzipan.
Moreover, some of the oils in the cake might leak through and discolor your icing, especially if you store the cake for a few days before use.
Almonds are the main ingredients in almond paste and marzipan, but you can’t use these two decorative pastes interchangeably in decorating cakes and other desserts.
Marzipan has a candy-like flavor and texture because of the egg whites. Although you can add sugar and corn syrup, your almond paste won’t taste as good as you want it to.
Moreover, the almond paste isn’t moldable. Its coarse texture doesn’t make it suitable for decorations.
Most people can use fondant instead of marzipan. It tastes similarly sweet and can be rolled out and stretched over your cakes and cupcakes.
However, marzipan is always a better option because the ground almond acts like flour, allowing the marzipan to stick to the surface of your cakes. It keeps the marzipan soft and easy to roll, so it doesn’t crack or get damaged.
Fondant, on the other hand, is made of sugar and gelatine. This means that it can quickly dry out and crack if you don’t spread it fast.
If you want to use fondant, you need to ensure that your cake has cooled down completely before adding your fondant layer. Moreover, you should stretch it so it’s the right consistency.
Marzipan’s nutty flavor pairs exceptionally well with fruit cakes. But, if you’re allergic to almonds or don’t like their taste, you can still decorate your cake and impress everyone.
Several options are available if you want to decorate a fruit cake without marzipan.
Roast dried fruits and cut them into pieces. Then, sprinkle them on top of your cake if you don’t want to use marzipan.
You can use brandy, sherry, rum, or fruit juice to moisten your cake.
Drizzle raw honey on top of your cake and use a spatula to spread it. Let the honey run, and it will saturate the cake, keeping it sweet and moist.
Using powdered sugar to decorate your cake is a fast and easy way to decorate your fruit cake.
Place decorative cutouts on top of your cake and sprinkle some powdered sugar. Once you’re done, use a pair of tweezers to lift the cutouts up.
Molten chocolate can be drizzled just like honey to decorate your fruit cake. You can keep the decoration simple or add some bits of dried fruits.
Marzipan is an excellent way to decorate your fruit cake, but you can skip it if you don’t like the nutty flavor or are allergic to almonds.
Some people use apricot jam, but this isn’t always the best option. If your cake is lumpy, the lumpiness can show through, and your fruit cake won’t look smooth.
Almond paste isn’t a good alternative to marzipan, but you can use fondant. There are also several decoration ideas that you can use if marzipan isn’t your favorite.
Sarah is the founder of Baking Kneads, LLC, a blog sharing guides, tips, and recipes for those learning how to bake. Growing up as the daughter of a baker, she spent much of her childhood learning the basics in a local bakery.