Marzipan, I recently discovered, is like Marmite−either you love it, or you hate it. There is nothing in between. I’m one of those people who love it. As far as I’m concerned you can leave the Christmas cake un-iced so long as there is a layer of marzipan on the top, I’m happy.
Luckily Mike feels the same. It’s traditional in our house that he has a box of marzipan fruits in his stocking and he will eat them before getting up. I’m allowed one piece, which is more than enough for me at that time of day.
Yesterday was his birthday so I baked a dozen marzipan muffins, only two of which are in the photo because the others got eaten, before I got round to taking pictures. Muffins never last long in our house. Some we eat and some we share and for me this is one of the best things about baking.
Cake is for sharing. It’s about going round to the neighbours with a plate of scones straight out of the oven, or having friends round for coffee and cake. It’s making a large cake to take to a party, or dozens of cupcakes for a book launch.
For me cake and writing have a lot in common. Writing a book, whether for children or adults, is about sharing a story you want to tell.
PS If marzipan muffins make your mouth water the recipe is simple: basic muffin mix plus tsp of almond extract and 175g marzipan, divided into 12 pieces. Put half the mix in the muffin cases then a layer of marzipan to be followed by the rest of mix.