I was reading a cake decorating book "Spectacular Cakes" by Mich Turner out of England and the directions say to first cover the cake in marizpan and then fondant. It actually says that if you do not want to use marizpan you can do two layers of fondant.
Has anyone actually done this? What are the advantages? I would think that because marizpan is made from almond paste that this would add signifigant cost the cake.
Generally done only on fruit cakes--seals in moisture and evens out bumps caused by nuts & fruits in the cake. Very expensive. Very heavy, so it doesn't work well on american/sponge cakes. Somewhat of an acquired taste/texture--like fondant.
It does taste heavenly though My friends from London love it when I cover even american style cakes with marzipan.
Hi. i'm from the uk and we do use marzipan to cover fruit cakes mainly. Lots of people here love the taste of marzipan and i usually put a thin layer onto sponge cakes unless the customer doesn't like it. It gives the cake a much nicer finish and the fondant is easier to fix to it than buttercream. I have never used 2 layers of fondant though i would imagine it would be very sickly, if i don't use marzipan i just put an extra thick coat of buttercream on.
I agree with the previous posters covering cakes with marzipan/almond paste is a throw back from fruit cakes.
It was used originally to help preserve fruit cakes as they needed to age.
There is no need for it nowadays unless you like the taste and some people find it easier to work with under fondant rather than buttercream.
you can buy blocks of marzipan here for very little money it's very cheap and tastes yuck in my opinion.
To buy the almonds to make your own would be rather expensive here as a 100g bag of ground almonds costs Euro 1.19 which is about $1.61 you need a lot more than one bag to make enough to cover just one cake, that's if you want a more superior flavour.
The bought blocks are the cheapest option and the easiest and that's why they are used alot.
Marzipan adds a lot more weight to a cake too!