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How Do I Store The Christmas Cake After Covering With Marzipan?

Asked by rangodango99. Answered on 11th November 2023

Full question

Hi, in Nigella Christmas, the Christmas Cake recipe has several make ahead tips. One of them is to marzipan the cake a week earlier than icing it. The tip notes that the marzipan should be left to dry out, so it doesn't seep into the icing. How should the cake be stored during this "drying out period"? I make the cake 6 weeks before Christmas and store wrapped in parchment and tin foil inside a sealed tin.

Once the marzipan is on, should I revert to this method of storing for another week? Or is there a different way that you would recommend storing the cake to dry out the marzipan? Thank you so much for answering my questions. It is a real help in my kitchen!

Traditional Christmas Cake
By Nigella
  • 14
  • 2

Our answer

Nigella's Traditional Christmas Cake recipe (from NIGELLA CHRISTMAS) is a rich fruit cake that benefits from a period of maturing and "feeding" with extra alcohol. During this period the cake should be wrapped in parchment and then foil as this prevents the "feeding" alcohol from evaporating before it can be absorbed by the cake. You need a layer of parchment first as foil can react badly with the dried fruit.

Once the cake has been covered with marzipan, the marzipan needs to dry out. Otherwise the oils from the marzipan can seep into the icing, causing discolouration. As you need the marzipan to dry out, we do not recommend wrapping the cake at this point or storing in an airtight container. If possible, leave it in a cool dry place, loosely covered with a clean tea towel (or two, depending on the size of the cake) or under a cake dome that is slightly propped up to let a little air circulate. The cake should also be fine if it is left out after it is first iced, but once you have cut into the cake then it is better to store it in a cake box or under a cake dome.


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