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Easter simnel Cake

Recipes Seasonal

A traditional Easter cake

An Easter classic, simnel cake is traditionally topped with eleven balls of marzipan to represent Jesus’ disciples, excluding Judas. You could also top this cake with pretty spring flowers.

Prep time: 30 minutes

Baking time: 1 hour 45 minutes

Serves: 12


For the cake:

175g unsalted butter, softened
175g soft, light brown sugar
3 eggs, beaten
175g Plain flour
1 tsp ground mixed spice
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
100g ground almonds
350g mixed dried fruit (raisins, currants, sultanas and mixed peel)
Grated zest of ½ a lemon

For the icing:

500g marzipan
2 tbsp apricot jam
1 egg, beaten


  • Grease and line an 18cm round cake tin and preheat the over to 140˚c / gas mark 1. 
  • Cut the marzipan into thirds and roll out one third. Cut out a circle the same size as your cake tin (cut around the tin, using the tin as a template). Repeat with a second third. Set the remaining marzipan and the two circles aside for later. 
  • In a large bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until it is pale and fluffy. 
  • Add the eggs, a little at a time, beating together between each addition until it is fully combined. 
  • Sift in half the flour, and fold into the mixture with a metal spoon. Add the mixed ground spice, ground almonds, salt, baking powder and sift in the remaining flour, folding until all of the ingredients are incorporated.
  • Add the mixed dried fruit and grated lemon zest to the mixture and stir in. 
  • Pour half of the cake mixture into your lined tin, spread it out to the sides to make sure it is evenly distributed. Place one of the marzipan circles on the top and cover with the remaining cake mixture. Spread to the sides and leaving a slight dip in the middle to allow for the cake to rise. 
  • Place in the middle of the over and cook for around an hour and 45 minutes. To check if the cake is ready to come out of the oven, insert a clean knife into the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean the cake is cooked.
  • Remove from the oven and leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes before taking it out of the cake tin and leaving to cool completely on a wire rack. 
  • Once cooled, spread the apricot jam across the top of the cake. Place your second marzipan circle on top of the cake. Divide the remaining marzipan into eleven and roll each piece into a round ball. Place the balls on top of the cake, in a circle around the edge. Brush the marzipan icing with the beaten egg.
  • Put the cake under a hot grill for a couple of minutes for the marzipan to start to caramelize. Be careful not to let the marzipan burn. Decorate with flowers and a ribbon tied around the cake if you wish.
  • This cake will keep for seven days in an airtight container. Serve with a cup of Miles West Country Tea

We'd love to see photos of you enjoying a moment with Miles and trying out this recipe! Follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram and share your pictures with the #MomentswithMiles. Happy Baking! 

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