This week I just enjoy painting. No cooking, no baking, no kitchen massacre. This happened to me all of a sudden and I blame the red hearts and pink ribbons. You can guess it, I am into the Valentines love this season. Seriously, if you know me then you will be surprised at this point, because I am not the romantic girl type. I am not to be smitten with red roses and the like, I always found it to be rather ridiculous and silly. Maybe that’s because I am more like a wild girl, you know the type of girl who used to plan war games as child or the one who will and can’t wear pink shirts. Well, it looks like I am over that now…
I always enjoyed working with Marzipan. It’s such an easy shapeable material and in Europe it is a very common candy treat. Of course the humble almond paste has some plus points since we can use it in our deco. You might have seen those wonderful pretty cakes with little detailed colored shaped as decorations. Those are often Marzipan forms and the same almond paste is commonly used to cover even whole cakes instead of using fondant.
But today I chose something easier to make, marzipan candy hearts, which even looks pretty and of course its more of a healthier treat since you will be using Marzipan Almond paste. I used raw marzipan paste but the same can be achieved with home made marzipan. The idea was taken from my childhood. We used to have catholic communion groups back in Primary school and I remember one session where the mother of a friend came up with the idea of painting little hearts for mothers-day. It was quite a highlight and we kids loved painting our little hand formed shaped with shaded textures. Of course marzipan can be easily died with food colors but its obviously more fun to paint your own candy with nice bright colors and even add textures and details.
Marzipan itself is never completely white, in fact one could call it rather beige or maybe cream. The Almond mass is quite “wet” too, so to color multiple shades you will need to dry your formed marzipan first. You have 2 options. Either you dry them naturally by leaving them out over night or by letting them dry in the sun or you can pop them into the oven and dry them at a low temperature for about 20 minutes. I chose the latter this time, simply because I am living in a tropical climate and the humidity can be a candy killer. Further I chose the oven as well because lots of dust accumulated these days outside and I didn’t want my hearts to get full of crap. It’s up to you which drying technique you choose before and after painting your marzipan hearts. It’s important that your marzipan is dry when you attempt to paint it and when they are ready to be gifted to your sweetheart.
- 200 grams raw Marzipan paste
- any food coloring shades (powder or liquid)
- New paint brushes (only use for food coloring!!)
- small bowls to mix colors
- gloves (optional)
- Cut your Marzipan raw mass into 1½ cm thick cubes and roll them into balls with a smooth surface.
- I chose round cherry like shaped hearts, you can mold them into any shape you like with your fingers.
- Allow your marzipan shapes to dry properly. I chose to dry them in the oven. You can do that by turning your oven to a minimum temperature at around 100 Celsius and keep them in for about 20 minutes.
- Next step coloring. If you are using food coloring powder, then mix it with 3-4 drops of water. Remember that only a small amount of food coloring is required. You can achieve lighter, more transparent shades by mixing less powder or color liquid with water.
- Wash your brushes properly before using and if you don’t want to get messy with color, then just wear gloves. I didn’t use gloves because I feel a bit handicapped with those on my hands. Anyway the color washes out real quick so no worries here. Carefully paint one layer of food coloring on your shapes.
- Keep your colored shaped to dry again by leaving out or by keeping them in the oven again at 100 Celsius for about 20 minutes. In a tropical climate I d suggest again the oven first and then leave them out in the sun for some more time so that the color gets properly absorbed.
- At this point you could give them one more paint shade or you could add some more color details. Remember to dry them properly again after each new fresh paint layer.
- Keep them stored in a airtight container and cool place. They can be kept for about 3 weeks in a cold climate.
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