Thursday, 26 December 2013

Competitive Christmas Cake Part 2

You may recall that a few months ago I started making a Christmas cake, purely because my friend had announced they had made their family cake. You can read how that came about here in part 1!

assistant jam-spreader
It started out as a bit of a joke but Dear Reader it has grown and grown.  From two families light-heartedly teasing each other about who might have made the best cake it has grown into an official bake-off with a booze-fueled cake-tasting finale to be held in another friend's newly-refurbished cellar
on New Year's Eve.

I had been so busy with other things like church, school plays and parties and general life that I had neglected to marzipan or ice my cake until Christmas Eve!  I know, I know *shakes head sadly* the marzipan should have had a week on the cake before I even thought of adding icing but on a positive note it meant my cake got an extra couple of weeks of being fed with alcohol so I'm hoping to gain points that way.

Even worse I had intended to make my own marzipan and icing but times are hard in the madmumof7 household so when the other competitors offered me their leftovers I took them gratefully. Saves waste and pennies.

rolled marzipan
So armed with sandwich bags of second hand marzipan and icing I gathered my tools and a few curious children and after a brief perusal of the search term "Christmas Cake Decorating" on Google I started my masterpiece.

Luckily the marzipan which had frankly been a bit sticky when my friend hand-smooshed it onto his cake was now, two weeks later, the perfect consistency for rolling and survived the careful transfer onto the jam-coated cake.

Then I blended my other friends left over roll-on fondant icing into some I had bought and carefully added that onto the moistened marzipan. Yes, I know I'm going to lose points for using ready to roll and fondant to boot!

I hand-crafted stars by doing the two-triangle star trick onto the rolled out icing then used the bottom of the star as the top so no marks showed. I had bought edible silver spray to make a feature of the big star but it didn't really show up so I grovelled in my cupboards and found a selection of coloured sugar shakers and improvised.

finished Christmas cake!
Sent a child off to hunt for a slim ribbon as the big wired one I had bought to go round the cake didn't look right and used a wand which originally came home in a party bag for the star pattern round the sides. You've got to give me points there for imagination and creative use of party bag tat!

I made more icing stars to fill out the space on my rather large (re-used) cake board and to be honest I am quite pleased with the finished product!

The proof of course will come in the eating and we have not yet sampled it. It could be a triumph-or a disaster!

And the true test will come when I line my cake sample up with the others in our New Years Eve bake-off which of course will be fully reported right here on this blog! Keep reading for the grand finale and bake-off results in a few days time!

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