The easiest Easter cake you’ll ever bake!
I wanted to make a Simnel cake this Easter, but I don’t really like fruit cake that much – it’s a bit dense – so I’ve come up with an alternative, light fruit cake (just like a sponge cake with added raisins, really) and think it’s a great idea for Easter. If you don’t want to add the marzipan middle then skip that part, but I can confirm that it’s so easy to make, you can do it with a toddler hanging around your ankles! Enjoy.
- 175g (6oz) Raisins
- 175g (6oz) Butter
- 175g (6oz) Golden Caster Sugar
- 3 eggs
- 225g (8oz) Plain Flour
- 1tsp Baking powder
- 1tsp Ground Mixed Spice
- Grated zest of half a lemon
- Grated zest of 1 orange
- A handful of chopped glace cherries, walnuts or other dried fruit or peel you might have in your cupboard (optional)
- 500g pack of golden marzipan
- 3tbsp jam
- A handful of mini eggs or other Easter decorations
Set the oven to 160°C and grease and line a cake tin.
Cream together the butter and sugar until they are light in colour. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, until fully combined. Sift in the flour, baking powder and ground mixed spice together. Add the raisins, fruit zest and any other bits and bobs you have.
Half fill the cake tin with mix. Roll half the marzipan out to a circle and place that on top of the mix. This makes it a bit like a sandwich cake. Then add the rest of the mix over the top.
Cook in the oven for approx 1.5 hours. Use a skewer to see if the cake is cooked – insert it and take it out, and if there is some runny mixture on the skewer, it’s not ready. If the top of the cake looks to be getting too brown but the inside of the cake isn’t cooked fully, cover it over with a piece of baking foil so it doesn’t burn.
Leave to cool completely.
To decorate, roll out the remaining marzipan. Brush the top of the cake with jam. Put the marzipan over the top and smooth.
(Optional stage) Brush the top of the cake with egg white and put under the grill until it is toasted and golden brown.
Decorate with Mini Eggs. Traditionally there should be 11 marzipan balls on the top of a Simnel cake, denoting the 12 apostles minus Judas, so you could follow that theme and use 11 Mini Eggs, plus a centrepiece of daffodils, if you wanted.