Simnel Cake

Serves: 10 - 12
Preparation: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 150 minutes


  • 225g Butter, softened
  • 225g Sugar
  • 4 Eggs
  • 225g plain flour
  • 225g sultanas
  • 110g currants
  • 110g glacé cherries, quartered
  • Grated zest of 2 Oranges and 2 Lemons
  • 2 tsp ground Cinnamon
  • 450g almond paste or marzipan
  • 2 tbsp apricot jam
  • 1 Egg, beaten


  1. Pre-heat oven to 150°C / gas mark 2. Place the butter, sugar, eggs, flour, sultanas, currants, glacé cherries, orange and lemon zest, and cinnamon in a mixing bowl and beat together until thoroughly blended. Place half the mixture in a lined 20cm deep round cake tin and level the surface.
  2. Take one-third of the almond paste and roll it out into a circle the size of the tin. Place it on top of the cake mixture. Spoon the remaining cake mixture over and smooth the surface.
  3. Bake for about 2 hours 30 mins until well risen and firm to the touch. After 1 hour cover the top with foil to prevent burning. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before turning out onto a wire rack.
  4. When the cake has cooled, brush the top with the warmed apricot jam and roll out half of the remaining almond paste to fit the top. Press firmly on the top and crimp the edges to decorate.
  5. Mark a criss-cross pattern on the almond paste with a sharp knife. Form the remaining almond paste into 12 balls and arrange around the edge (representing the 12 apostles).
  6. Preheat the grill. Place the cake under the preheated grill to turn the almond paste golden.

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