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Video:How to Ice a Classic British Christmas Cake

with Elaine Lemm

Icing a classic British Christmas cake is a process with a few steps, but it's well worth the effort! Watch this About.com video to learn how to ice it perfectly.See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Ice a Classic British Christmas Cake

Hi, I'm Elaine Lemm for About.com Food, and today I'm going to show you how to ice a classic British Christmas Cake.

Before Icing a Classic British Christmas Cake

Here's a cake I made a little while ago. Before we put the icing on here we actually need to protect the cake a little bit from the icing and to do this we're going to cover the cake with marzipan, or you may also know it as almond paste.

Instructions for Icing a Classic British Christmas Cake

First we need a glue, and for the glue I'm going to use this warmed apricot jam. Just going to spread this all over the cake, then I have here a sheet of ready rolled marzipan, so we're just going to lay that onto the centre of the cake and just smooth the marzipan down. And where you get a fold in the marzipan just press it down using your fingers, and the same if you get any cracks around the top. Once that's all pressed down we need a sharp knife and then we just trim away the bottom to remove any excess marzipan. And now w're ready to ice.

Icing Options for Christmas Cake

There are two types of icing you can use to ice your Christmas Cake. There is fondant icing, but traditionally a British Christmas Cake would always be done with Royal Icing, and that's what I'm going to make today.

Royal Icing for Christmas Cake

For the Royal Icing you need 3 egg whites, a tablespoon of glycerine and 550 grams of icing sugar. So to begin we put the egg whites into our mixer and we're going to put them on a medium speed and beat them until they're thick and fluffy. So you can see the egg whites are lovely and thick and fluffy so now it's time to add the icing sugar, and we're just going to do this a little bit at a time while the mixer's running. That's the icing sugar mixed and as you can see we've got a really thick, glossy icing there. The last thing is just to add in the tablespoon of glycerine and just give that one final mix, and we're ready to ice the cake.

Covering the Cake With Icing

I've got my lovely thick icing, and we're just literally going to cover the cake with this. Now you can make it smooth or I'm going to make it into a little bit of a snow scene I think. And just lift the icing a little bit, keep the sides just slightly smooth because we're going to put a ribbon around there. Don't worry about the mess on the board because once it's dry all that will just chip away. We'll just give that a couple of hours to dry and then we're going to decorate. That's the fun part! So here we are with our finished Christmas Cake, the icing dried, and I've decorated it with a few of my favourite things. You can decorate its you wish, you're limited only by your imagination.

Have a Happy Christmas!

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