This is from a recipe I found in Sophie Jackson’s wonderful ‘The Medieval Christmas’ ( Sutton Publishing) which she very kindly allowed me to reproduce. I had great fun making this cake and can thoroughly recommend it. I would even go as far as to say it would make a great substitute for a regular Xmas cake recipe. Just add the marzipan and icing. Happy Baking!
- 170g (6 oz) butter
- 170g (6 oz) sugar
- 170g (6oz) flour
- ½ teaspoon each of:
- Ground allspice, ground cinnamon, mace, ground ginger, ground coriander, ground nutmeg
- 2 grinds of pepper
- 3 tablespoons of brandy
- 3 eggs
- 340g (12 oz) currants
- 42g (11/2 ounces) flaked almonds
- One orange and one lemon grated
- 1 tablespoon of honey
Preheat the oven to 150 degrees C. Grease and line a 15cm round cake tin. For the outside of the tin, prepare two strips of greaseproof paper and one long strip of silver foil. For the top, cut a sheet of greaseproof paper and one of silver foil. A piece of string will be needed to hold it all in place.
- Soften the butter in a mixing bowl. Add the sugar and cream together with the butter until the mixture appears light and fluffy.
- Add the eggs one at a time, beating well and also adding one tablespoon of flour to prevent curdling. Once all the eggs are mixed in, add the brandy, then the flour and spices, folding them in to keep air in the mixture.
- Finally stir in the currants, almonds, lemon and orange peel and honey.
- Pour the mixture into the prepared cake tin. At this point, you could also add a dried pea or a dried bean to the cake. Do not use a kidney bean.
- Cook for half an hour at 150 degrees C and then cover the top with a sheet of greaseproof paper beneath one of silver foil. Turn the oven down to 140 degrees C and bake for a further one hour fifteen minutes. For the last ten/fifteen minutes, remove the foil to brown the top more. When a warm rounded knife is placed inside, it should come out clean.