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Re-creating the desserts in Classic & Contemporary Christmas Cakes may take some time, but the results are gorgeous." --Bon Appetit
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For the English, sugar paste (fondant) cake decoration is truly an art. Nadiene Hurst and Julie Springall are professional cake decorators in England, specializing in royal icing and sugar paste. They both teach and write for a variety of cake-decorating and bridal magazines. Each of the more than 20 exquisite Christmas cakes photographed and described in Classic and Contemporary Christmas Cakes was done by one or the other.
Step-by-step instructions with photos follow ingredient lists so comprehensive they include even the tools and materials necessary to re-create these elaborate cakes. Each cake begins with either a traditional Rich Fruit Cake or an alternative Light Fruit Cake, and you can choose whichever you prefer. The recipes for both are in the back, and they are scaled so that you can make as many cakes as you need, as large or as small as you'd like. A recipe for royal icing is followed by instructions for covering cakes and cake boards and for piping decorations.
Some of the cakes described are timeless. The Crown of Holly, the cover recipe, is beautifully draped with a two-tone yellow sugar paste and a mass of holly leaves and berries made of gum paste. Midnight Snowflakes is simple enough for beginners; covered with dark blue sugar paste, snowflakes made of royal icing are carefully piped on top. It may sound difficult, but there's a template for the intricate snowflake pattern in the back (there are templates for almost every design and decoration shown in any of the recipes).
For a traditional Christmas gift, you could make a project out of Yuletide Slices. Small slices of fruitcake are covered with marzipan and sugar paste, and then each one is decorated differently. The authors suggest making two or three different designs and then arranging a few of each in gift boxes. The designs include simple ones like Stars, Trees, Ribbons, and Bells, and more elaborate ones such as Taffeta and Holly, Fruits (made of marzipan), and Christmas Rose (made of gum paste).
There are also modern cakes like the brightly colored Three Kings, which is topped with gold stars springing out on wires, and Festive Drapes, a magnificent creation decorated with gold holly leaves, pearl pears made of marzipan, and red taffeta drapes made of sugar paste. The recipes are certainly complex and time-consuming, and you'll need to find a good cake-decorating supply store for the tools and materials, but the final results will amaze and astound and be well worth the effort involved. --Leora Y. BloomAbout the Author:
Nadine Hurst has won many prestigious tropies for her competiton work in royal icing, from Hotelympia to the British Sugarcraft Guild National Exhibition Competitions, along with being involved in the creation of one of the royal wedding cakes.
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Book Description Merehurst Limited, 2000. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M1853918334
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Book Description Merehurst Limited, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P111853918334
Book Description Merehurst Limited, 2000. Hardcover. Condition: New. Hardcover with Jacket. Seller Inventory # DADAX1853918334
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