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Simnel cake was not always associated as it now is with Easter. It used to be eaten on the fourth Sunday of Lent, which was known as Simnel or Mothering Sunday. Simnel cake has now moved to a later point in the calendar, but still retains a deep significance, with its 11 balls of marzipan to represent the 12 disciples, minus Judas. It’s a celebration of fruit and marzipan; a true family cake. If you omit the marzipan balls, it is a delicious light fruit cake for any time of year.
- 1 Pound & 2 Ounces Marzipan
- Powdered Sugar For Dusting
- 14 Ounces Mixed Dried Fruit (Raisins, Golden Raisins, Currants)
- 1/4 Cup Dried Mixed Peel (Orange, Lemon, Lime, Grapefruit)
- Zest Of 1 Lemon
- Zest Of 1 Orange
- 1 1/4 Cups Unbleached Flour
- 1 Teaspoon Baking Powder
- 1 Teaspoon Spice Mix (Allspice, Nutmeg, Cinnamon)
- 3/4 Cup Butter (Softened)
- 1 Cup Brown Sugar
- 3 Eggs (Room Temperature)
- 2 Tablespoons Milk
- 2 Tablespoons Apricot Jam
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- Grease with butter and line with parchment paper 8 inch round cake pan. Set aside.
- Roll out, to 8 inch disk, 7 ounces of marzipan and dust with powdered sugar. Measure it with your cake pan if you need to.
- In medium-size bowl add dried fruit, dried peels, and zests. In another medium-size bowl add flour, baking powder, and spice mixture. In large-size bowl add butter and sugar. Cream until fluffy. Add eggs one at a time. Beat well after each egg. Add flour mixture and fruit mixture to wet mixture. Mix to combine. Fold in milk. Spoon half of batter into prepared pan. Level surface with a spatula. Place marzipan disk on top of batter. Spoon rest of batter on top of marzipan disk. Spread evenly.
- Place in oven 2 to 2 1/2 hours until golden brown. Remove from oven and transfer to wire rack and cool before turning out of pan. Make certain cake is completely cool before you decorate.
- Gently warm apricot jam in saucepan until melted. Brush warmed jam over surface of cake.
- Take 4 ounces marzipan and roll out 11 balls. Set aside.
- On counter dusted with powdered sugar, roll remaining marzipan out into disk to fit on top of the cake. Use base of cake pan as a template. Place disk on top of cake. Pinch edges to make a pattern if you want to. Arrange 11 balls evenly around cake, using a tiny amount of apricot jam to help stick and stay in place. Place under hot broiler 2 minutes to brown. Make sure not to let marzipan burn.
- Makes 1 Cake
- Serves 8 to 10
- Prep Time: 50 Minutes Cook Time: 272 Minutes Total Time: 322 Minutes
- "Work With What You Got!"
- © Victoria Hart Glavin Tiny New York Kitchen © 2017 All Rights Reserved