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Simnel Cake

Ingredients:
6 oz. butter/margarine
6 oz. sugar
3 eggs
8oz. flour
1 teasp. baking powder
1 teasp. mixed (cake) spice
1 lb mixed dried fruit
3 oz. chopped glace cherries
3 oz chopped candied peel
2 oz.chopped blanched almonds
2 tablesp. milk.

Ingredients for marzipan:
(or use ready prepared!)
8 oz. ground almonds
4 oz. castor sugar
4 oz. sieved icing sugar
2 egg yolks or 1 egg to bind

egg white for glaze & a little sieved jam (jelly)


Prepare the marzipan by mixing all the ingredients together. Roll out into two 8 inch rounds.
Cream the butter/margarine together until soft and light. Gradually beat in the eggs, add a little sieved flour if the mixture shows signs of curdling. Sieve flour, baking powder and spice and fold into the egg mixture. Add the fruit and milk.
Put half the mixture into a greased and floured 8-inch cake tin. Cover with one on the rounds of marzipan and then add the rest of the cake mixture.
Bake for about 2hrs 15 mins at 325-350deg.F, 160deg.C, Gas mark 3.
Test to see if it is cooked - the cake should have stopped "singing" and be firm to the touch!
Allow the cake to cool on a wire tray. Brush the top with the sieved jam (jelly) and cover with the second round of marzipan. Brush with the egg white and brown for a little time under a pre-heated low grill. Decorate with sugar flowers etc and tie a ribbon around the edge!


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