Monday, September 5, 2011

Her Majesty's Marzipan

What do you give a queen for her birthday?

Marzipan, of course!

Marzipan is a confectionery delight made of sugar, almond paste, and more sugar! It had its hey-day in Tudor-Elizabethan times, served as one of the many delightful desserts at a court feast.

The beauty of Marzipan, other than its taste, is that it can be molded into any shape you can imagine, and also tinted with vegetable dies (or the modern equivalent, food coloring!) The Tudors ordered up miniature ships made of marzipan for their tables, or castles and cathedrals, or anything else that they desired!

For my own celebration of Queen Elizabeth I's birthday, I will be making Marzipan, upon other things. I wanted to share my recipe with you all in case you feel inclined to do the same! Keep in mind you can also buy pre-made Marzipan (Danish company Odense Marcipan is available at you local supermarket here in the states) but you will still need to make the glaze and do the coloring and shaping yourself! Also, if you are vegan, like me, or even vegetarian, this is one of the few historically accurate Tudor foods that you can actually consume without having to modify the recipe!

Her Majesty's Marzipan

Candy
1 8-ounce can     almond paste
1 1/2 tablespoons     light corn syrup
1 1/3 cup sifted     confectioner's sugar
                 food coloring

Glaze
2 tablespoons    light corn syrup
1/4 cup     water

Step 1: In a medium bowl, by hand, knead the almond paste , then pour in light corn syrup and continue to knead.

Step 2: Add the sugar gradually, continuing to kneading until the ingredients are completely mixed together.

Step 3: Cover mixture with plastic wrap and refrigerate in an airtight container until ready to shape.

Step 4: Tint the Marzipan by kneading in food coloring as desired, then shape.

Step 5: To prepare the glaze, combine corn syrup and water in a saucepan, mixing well. Bring water to a boil, stirring until the syrup has dissolved.

Step 6: Brush the marzipan with the confectionery glaze and let it dry overnight on waxed paper before refrigerating in an airtight container.

This recipe makes enough to shape about three dozen small marzipan figures.

Tomorrow I will be posting pictures of my creations-Granted, I know my artistic limitations and will not be attempting to replicate Westminster Abbey or anything of the sort, but there will be a Tudor theme!

Perhaps if any of you try it at home, you can share your pictures with me and I will add them to the site! I would love to see them!

Happy Cooking!

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