Prue Leith's Fondant Fancies

Prue Leith’s Fondant Fancies

Impress your friends and family with a batch of these homemade fondant fancies! Perfect for an afternoon tea, you can have fun experimenting with different colour and flavour combinations.

Makes: 9
Difficulty: Needs skill
Baking Time: 30 mins
  • Ingredients
  • Method
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Step 1
Heat the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/Gas 4.

Step 2
Grease and line a 15cm square cake tin with baking paper.

Step 3
For the sponge, beat together the softened butter and caster sugar until light and creamy. Gradually add the beaten eggs, mixing well between each addition. Add the almond extract and lemon zest and mix again to combine.

Step 4
Sift the flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt into the bowl. Add the ground almonds and milk and beat again until the cake mixture is smooth.

Step 5
Spoon into the prepared tin, spread level and bake for 25-30 minutes until well risen, golden brown and a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean.

Step 6
Leave to cool in the tin for 5-10 minutes before turning out onto a cooling rack to cool completely.

Step 7
For the buttercream, beat the butter, icing sugar and vanilla until very pale and soft. Spoon into a small piping bag fitted with a 1cm open star nozzle, if you have one.

Step 8
Slice the top of the cake to level if it has domed, then cut the sponge into nine perfectly neat squares.

Step 9
Lightly dust the work surface with icing sugar and roll the marzipan into a large square. Cut into nine 4½cm squares. Lightly brush a little apricot jam onto each marzipan square and place on top of the cakes. Turn the cakes upside down so that the marzipan is now on the work surface and trim the sides of the marzipan to neaten. Turn the right way up and pipe a buttercream rosette on top of each cake.

Step 10
Chill the cakes in the fridge or freezer until the buttercream is firm to touch.

Step 11
For the coating, tip the fondant icing sugar into a mixing bowl and, whisking continuously, gradually add the lemon juice and a little warm water (if needed) until the icing is smooth and thick but pourable. Add the food colouring paste drop by drop and mix to combine.

Step 12
When the cakes are chilled, place one on top of a fork. Hold the fork over the icing bowl and spoon icing over the top and sides of the cake to cover. Using a palette knife carefully slide the cake off the fork onto a wire rack set over a tray and repeat to ice all the cakes.

Step 13
Sprinkle the tops with orange, red and yellow sprinkles and place in the paper cases to serve.