Marzipan fruits hat

Marzipan fruits hat

Easiest ever all-in-one fruit cake

By
From
The Birthday Cake Book
Serves
10
Photographer
Laura Edwards

A sensational centrepiece. Don’t be put off if making sugar roses and fruits is not for you. Exquisite ribbons, feathers, flowers, butterflies and birds can be found easily: go and raid the local haberdasher's. Then you only have to bake the cake, cover it and the board with sugarpaste and decorate! The roses can be made with sugarpaste, which is easier to handle than petal paste, though the petals will be less fine.

For the hat

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
1.5kg white sugarpaste
grape violet food colour paste
icing sugar, to dust
1 Easiest ever all-in-one fruit cake, baked in a 15cm round cake tin
3 tablespoons apricot jam
60 g bag purple royal icing
60cm 5 cm-wide black grosgrain ribbon
black feathers
black netting
sticky tape
135cm 1.5 cm-wide black satin ribbon, for the board

Special equipment

Quantity Ingredient
40 cm round cake drum
15 cm round cake drum

For two pears

Quantity Ingredient
120g white sugarpaste
caramel-ivory food colour paste
christmas green food colour paste
primrose food colour paste
paint brush

For one orange

Quantity Ingredient
50g white sugarpaste
peach food colour paste
egg yellow food colour paste
dot claret food colour paste

For three clementines

Quantity Ingredient
60g white sugarpaste
peach food colour paste
primrose food colour paste
dot claret food colour paste
3 cloves

For one lemon

Quantity Ingredient
30g white sugarpaste
primrose food colour paste
edible glaze spray, (optional)

For the cut edges of the fruit

Quantity Ingredient
30g white sugarpaste
primrose food colour paste
edible glue

For one dark red rose

Quantity Ingredient
50g white petal paste
claret food colour paste
christmas red food colour paste

For three pink roses

Quantity Ingredient
150g white petal paste
claret food colour paste

For two orange roses

Quantity Ingredient
100g white petal paste
peach food colour paste
egg yellow food colour paste
claret food colour paste

Method

  1. As usual, all sugar decorations may be made weeks in advance and stored in a cardboard box. Begin by colouring the sugarpaste deep purple, using the grape violet food colour. If you can, leave overnight as it will become much more manageable.
  2. To cover the large cake drum, dust it lightly with icing sugar and flick a little water over it to act as a glue. On a clean work surface lightly dusted with icing sugar, roll out 1 kg of the purple sugarpaste to a rough circle slightly larger than the 40 cm drum and about 5 mm thick. Roll loosely around the rolling pin on to the drum. Rub down on the drum with your hands and cut away excess all around the board.
  3. Cut the top surface from the fruit cake at a slight angle, so that one side is a centimetre or so higher. Turn the cake upside down. Place the 15 cm drum on the work surface. Warm the apricot jam, push it through a sieve if necessary, and brush a little on to the drum. Place the cake on to it and brush the remaining jam over the top and sides.
  4. On a clean work surface lightly dusted with icing sugar, roll out the remaining purple sugarpaste into a rough circle slightly larger than the top and sides of the cake and about 5mm thick. Roll loosely around the rolling pin and place on to the cake, rubbing and pressing the icing with your hands, then cut away excess around the edges. Spread some purple royal icing into the centre of the large cake drum and place the covered cake centrally on to it. It is best to allow the sugarpaste to dry for at least a couple of hours and preferably overnight. Decorate with your ribbons, feathers and netting – or other selected decorations – using the purple icing and sticky tape to attach.
  5. Should you decide to make the sugar fruits and flowers, here is how I made mine. Make up all the coloured icing, using the combinations given right.
  6. To make the pears, remove a tiny piece of sugarpaste for the stalks. Mould the pears: make two balls, form each into a cone and model the stalk end slightly narrower. Indent the top slightly and leave overnight. Then mix a little caramel-ivory colour with water, dip in a paint brush and flick it – from quite close – over the pears.
  7. To make the orange, simply make a ball of the coloured sugarpaste by rolling it in your hands. Roll over a fine grater to make the mottled skin. Allow to dry, preferably overnight. Make the clementines and the lemon in exactly the same way, moulding the lemon shape, and pressing a clove into the top of each clementine. If you wish, spray the lemon, orange and clementines with the glaze spray for a shine.
  8. To make the cut fruits, cut one pear, the orange, the lemon and one clementine in half. (This is best done after they have dried overnight.) Re-shape slightly if necessary. On a clean work surface lightly dusted with icing sugar, roll out the very pale cream sugarpaste as thin as you can. One by one, brush each cut side of the fruits with a little edible glue, lay the cream sugarpaste on to it and cut to shape with a sharp craft knife. Allow to dry for at least 30 minutes. To paint, use a very fine paint brush and a palette of most of the food colours listed. As always, if you paint from real fruits, they will be more realistic.
  9. To make sugarpaste roses, make up the coloured icing (making half of each batch in a darker tone). Take 25 g of each tone of the paste for each rose. Split a polythene bag open and place on a work surface. Take about one-third of the darker colour, roll into a ball and then a cone. Flatten the base on the work surface and indent into a cone on top of a rough ball.
  10. Using half the darker colour, roll three balls and lay them on one side of the bag. Fold over the other side and flatten each ball until quite thin. Keep one side of each petal slightly thicker (to go around the cone centre). Peel back the bag gently. Take one petal at a time and, with the thinner part uppermost, mould it around the cone, completely covering the top. Take the second petal and place it centrally over the seam of the first (again thinner side uppermost) and mould it around the cone. Place the third petal directly opposite. Tweak the petals as you work, to look like a real rose. Make three more darker-toned petals in the same way, each overlapping the last, and tweaking the petals as you work. Take half the lighter toned paste, make a row of five petals and lastly – using up the remaining paste – a final row of five petals. With a knife, cut away the base at an angle.
Tags:
Baking
Cakes
Birthday
cake
sweets
dessert
sweet
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