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How to Make Frosted Crystalized Fruit, Nuts and Herbs

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Egg,Gluten,Wheat Vegan,Vegetarian

About this recipe:

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Frosting or crystalizing fruits nuts and herbs is quicker and uses less sugar than candying, resulting in attractive decorations that can be used on a show-stopper cake. Rosemary fronds, thyme stalks and star anise are the best herbs to use. Walnuts, pecans and blanched almonds are the best nuts. Choose hard fruits for frosting, such as fresh cranberries or slithers of pumpkin or quince. For best results, assemble everything you need before you start frosting, as the syrup needs to be used quickly. If frosting different items make a separate syrup for each. Take care with the hot syrup which can cause burns. 

Why not try and decorate our recipe for Vegan and Gluten Free Christmas Cake?

Equipment:

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saucepan, tongs or slotted spoon, large chopping board, parchment paper or baking liner and mixing bowl

Ingredients:

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Frosting Syrup
100g granulated sugar
2 tbsp water

Fruits, Nuts or Herbs for Frosting
25g caster sugar
100g pumpkin, quince or cranberry
75g nuts
1 fresh herb bouquet
caster sugar, for dusting

Method:

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Frosting Crystalizing Syrup

  1. Scatter the granulated sugar over the base of a saucepan and sprinkle the water evenly over the sugar.
  2. Put the saucepan over a medium heat until bubbles start to appear.
  3. Shake the pan, but do not stir, and leave it to simmer gently until the sugar is fully dissolved.
  4. Remove the pan of clear syrup from the heat.

Frosted Crystalized Fruits

  1. Measure the caster sugar into a bowl.
  2. Cover a large chopping board with parchment paper or a baking liner.
  3. Carefully slide the fruit pieces into the hot syrup.
  4. Gently stir the fruit pieces so they are fully coated.  
  5. Return the pan to the heat and simmer gently for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Using a slotted spoon lift the fruits out of the pan, allowing any excess syrup to drain off.
  7. Spread out the fruits on the covered chopping board.
  8. Dust the fruit pieces with caster sugar, turn them over and dust them again. 
  9. Leave the fruits to dry.
  10. Store the frosted fruits in an airtight tin for up to a week.

Frosted Crystalized Nuts

  1. Measure the caster sugar into a bowl.
  2. Cover a large chopping board with parchment paper or a baking liner.
  3. Carefully add 75g of nuts to the hot syrup. 
  4. Stir the nuts so they are fully coated. 
  5. Return the pan to the heat and simmer gently for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  6. Using a slotted spoon, lift the nuts out of the saucepan, allowing any excess syrup to drain. 
  7. Spread out the nuts on the covered chopping board.
  8. Dust some caster sugar over the nuts.
  9. Leave the nuts to cool then store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Frosted Crystalized Rosemary, Thyme or Bay Leaves

  1. Measure the caster sugar into a bowl.
  2. Cover a large chopping board with parchment paper or a baking liner.
  3. Carefully slide the herb leaves or fronds into the pan of hot syrup.
  4. Turn the herbs in the syrup so that they are fully coated.
  5. Return the pan to the heat and simmer gently for a minute then remove from the heat.
  6. Using tongs, lift up the herbs, one piece at a time, and allow excess syrup to drain off.
  7. Transfer the herbs to the bowl of caster sugar and turn them over so they are well covered in sugar.
  8. Lift the sugared herbs onto the parchment paper and spread out the herb leaves if required.
  9. Scatter a little more sugar over the herbs and leave them to dry.
  10. Store the frosted herbs in an airtight container for up to a week.
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