Simnel Cake Recipe:

1. Cream the butter, grated lemon rind and sugar together until the mixture is light and fluffy

2. Beat in the eggs, one at a time and stir in the fruits and peel

3. Sift the flour, a pinch of salt, pinch of baking powder and the spice together

4. Fold the sieved ingredients into the creamed mixture (if necessary, add 1 to 2 tablespoons of milk)

5. Grease and line a 7 inch round, deep cake tin

6. Spoon the cake mixture into the cake tin and level the top

7. Bake in the center of the preheated oven for about 3 to 3 and 1/2hours

8. Meanwhile, mix together the ground almonds and all the sugar

9. Add half the lightly beaten egg with a few drops of lemon essence and 3teaspoons strained lemon juice

10. Knead thoroughly until the almond paste is smooth

11. Roll two-thirds of the almond paste out to a 7 inch round and place it on top of the cooled cake

12. Smooth the paste around the sides

13. The remaining paste is shaped into 11 balls and set round the edge of the cake to represent the apostles, excluding Judas

14. The center of the cake can be decorated with small eggs and golden Easter chicks

List of ingredients required:

6 oz (175g) chopped mixed peel
6 oz (175g) sultanas
14 oz plain flour
4 large eggs
2 large lemons
1 level teaspoon mixed spice
1 and 1/4 lb currants
1/2 lb unsalted butter
1/2 lb caster sugar
Salt
Baking powder

Decoration:

4 oz (115g) caster sugar
4 oz (115g) icing sugar
4 oz (115g) ground almonds
1 large egg
Lemon essence
Sugar or chocolate eggs

The oven should be preheated at a temperature of 350F (180C)

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