Almond paste is a mixture of ground almonds and confectioner’s sugar in equal quantities, combined with beaten egg whites and heavy cream or corn syrup. To make almond paste, put three cups of peeled and blanched almonds in the food processor and process until the almonds are finely ground. Add three cups of sifted confectioners' sugar to the food processor along with two egg whites, two teaspoons of almond extract, and 1/3 teaspoon of salt, and blend until you get a smooth, well combined paste. Move this paste to a clean, flat surface and gently knead into a ball. Put the finished paste in an airtight container and place it in the refrigerator. This paste will last for about one month in the refrigerator, and for three months in the freezer.
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Marzipan is a confection consisting of sugar or honey combined with ground almonds. Marzipan is mostly prepared from almond paste, so if you have almond paste stored in your refrigerator, take two cups of it and combine it with two egg whites. Knead the mixture with your hands until it is well combined. Then, add six cups of icing sugar (one cup at a time) to this mixture and knead well. Add one teaspoon of pure vanilla extract and work on it with your hands until the mixture is smooth and pliable. If the finished product is too sticky, add a bit more icing sugar and process with your hands. Once you are satisfied with the consistency of your homemade marzipan, wrap it up tightly in plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator.
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