Tag Archives: Simnel Cake

Simnel Cake

Simple Cake

One of the oldest Christian festivals, Easter marks Christ’s resurrection from the dead.

Simnel cake has at some point been adopted as a traditional Easter cake.

The 11 marzipan balls on the
top represent the apostles,
minus the treacherous Judas.

Simnel Cake

  • Servings: 11 slices
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Calories 722 per portion
Fat 30g (13.2g sat) per portion
Suitable for vegetarians

Ingredients

  • Butter 250g (9oz), softened
  • Light muscovado sugar 250g (9oz)
  • Eggs 4
  • Plain flour 300g (11oz)
  • Baking powder 1 tsp
  • Ground mixed spice 2 tsp
  • Ground almonds 50g (2oz)
  • Luxury dried mixed fruit 500g (1lb 2oz)
  • Lemon 1, finely grated zest and 2 tbsp juice
  • White marzipan 500g (1lb 2oz)
  • Apricot glaze or sieved apricot jam 2 tbsp

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F/Gas 2 and line a 20cm (8in) cake tin with baking parchment.
    Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, adding a spoonful of the flour along with each egg. Sift in the remaining flour, baking powder and spice and fold the almonds, dried fruit and lemon zest and juice into the mixture. Spoon half into the cake tin and smooth the surface level.
  2. Roll out one third of the marzipan until it’s a circle, just smaller than the cake tin, and lay it on top of the mixture in the tin. Spoon the remaining mixture over the top and level the surface.
  3. Bake the cake in the centre of the oven for 2–2¼ hours, or until a skewer comes out clean after being inserted into the cake. Cover with a sheet of baking parchment if it starts to brown. When cooked, remove the cake from the oven and leave to cool.
  4. Remove the cake from the tin and peel away the lining paper. Spread the apricot glaze or jam over the top. Roll out half of the remaining marzipan to fit the top of the cake. Place it on the cake and smooth down, taking care not to trap any air pockets underneath. Pinch around the edges.
  5. Divide the remaining marzipan into 11 pieces and roll each into a ball. Brush a little apricot glaze or jam onto the base of each and evenly space around the top of the cake. Place under a hot grill to brown the marzipan lightly. Remove from the grill and leave to cool before serving.

Cook’s tips
The cake will keep in an airtight container for up to a week.
If you have a choice of marzipan, choose white marzipan, which has a more natural flavour than golden marzipan.

Eat Out, In: Easter | Fantastic foolproof recipes for a relaxed Easter lunch

Foolproof recipes for Easter lunch

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Eat Out, In: Easter 

 

Foolproof recipes for a relaxed Easter lunch

 

After a morning of Easter egg hunting, enjoy a relaxed Easter lunch at home with succulent roast lamb followed with a delicious trifle.

If you can squeeze in a small slice of something, here’s a recipe for an exquisite Simnel Cake too.

 


Simple Roast LambSimple Roast Lamb

Serves 6
Time 2½–3 hrs plus resting
Calories 625
Fat 34g of which 13g is saturated

Half leg of lamb weighing about 1.8kg (4lb)
Garlic 4 cloves, peeled and chopped
Fresh rosemary 4 sprigs, leaves plucked and chopped
Olive oil 6 tbsp
Small new potatoes 750g (1lb 10oz), scrubbed
Chantenay carrots 500g (1lb 2oz), trimmed and scrubbed
Asparagus 2 bundles weighing about 500g (1lb 2oz), trimmed

1 Preheat oven to 190ºC/Gas 5. Place lamb in a roasting tin. Mix together garlic, rosemary and 2 tablespoons of olive oil with freshly ground black pepper. Spread all over lamb. Roast for 2–2½ hours, depending on how you like your meat cooked.

2 When lamb has an hour left to cook, bring potatoes (cut any big ones in half) and carrots up to boil in pan of water and simmer for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, put remaining oil in a roasting tin in the oven above lamb to heat up. Drain vegetables, add to hot oil and roast for 30 minutes. Remove from oven and add asparagus. Stir well and cook for a further 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender.

3 Leave lamb to rest for 10 minutes before carving. Serve with gravy made from juices.

 

Rhubarb Syllabub TrifleRhubarb Syllabub Trifle

6 servings
1 hour preparation time
2 hours or overnight chilling time
580 Kcal per portion
23.4g fat per portion of which 14.4g is saturated
Suitable for vegetarians

Lemon 1 large, a little grated rind to garnish and the rest finely pared and strained juice
Caster sugar 250g (9oz)
White wine 150ml (1⁄4 pint)
Rhubarb 900g (2lb), washed, trimmed and cut into 2.5cm (1in) pieces
Trifle sponge cakes 1 packet of 8
Raspberry jam approximately 175g (6oz)
Double cream 284ml carton
Finely sliced pistachio nuts optional

1 Place the pared lemon rind and juice and 75g (3oz) of the sugar in a bowl. Add the white wine and stir until dissolved. Cover and chill.

2 Put the rhubarb into a wide, stainless steel, lidded frying pan or flameproof casserole. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar and add 2–3 tbsp of cold water. Cover and cook over a moderate heat until the rhubarb juices flow, and the fruit is softened but not broken up. Remove from the heat, carefully drain and reserve the juice.

3 Slice each sponge cake in half horizontally. Spread jam over half of the slices, then cover with the remaining slices and place, in a single layer, in six individual glasses, trimming the sponge to fit. Spread any remaining jam over the top of the sponge cakes.

4 Spoon approximately two-thirds of the rhubarb juice over the sponge cakes. Use enough to moisten them well, but not to saturate. (Any left-over juice can be chilled and diluted with soda or tonic water to make a refreshing drink.)

5 Spoon the cooked rhubarb over the sponge cakes, cover and refrigerate until cold.

6 To make the topping, remove the lemon rind from the wine and discard. Then pour the cream into the

wine and whisk until it is thick enough to hold a trail – but take care not to over-whisk or the mixture will curdle.

7 Pour the syllabub on top of the chilled rhubarb and mark with a deep swirl. Cover the glasses and put in the refrigerator to chill for at least 2 hours, or even overnight. Serve scattered with pistachio nuts, if using, and grated lemon rind.

Cook’s tip
Preferably choose younger stalks of rhubarb and those with the reddest colour. Younger stalks are more tender, whereas older ones can be stringy and drier. Redder stalks also give the trifle a better colour.

 

Simnel CakeSimnel Cake

Preparation time – 30 minutes
Cooking time – 2¼ hours
Calories per slice – 722 Kcal
Fat per slice – 30g
of which saturated – 13.2g
Makes – 11 slices
Suitable for vegetarians

Butter 250g (9oz), softened
Light muscovado sugar 250g (9oz)
Eggs 4
Plain flour 300g (11oz)
Baking powder 1 tsp
Ground mixed spice 2 tsp
Ground almonds 50g (2oz)
Luxury dried mixed fruit 500g (1lb 2oz)
Lemon 1, finely grated zest and 2 tbsp juice
White marzipan 500g (1lb 2oz)
Apricot glaze or sieved apricot jam 2 tbsp

1 Preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F/Gas 2 and line a 20cm (8in) cake tin with baking parchment.

2 Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, adding a spoonful of the flour along with each egg. Sift in the remaining flour, baking powder and spice and fold the almonds, dried fruit and lemon zest and juice into the mixture. Spoon half into the cake tin and smooth the surface level.

3 Roll out one third of the marzipan until it’s a circle, just smaller than the cake tin, and lay it on top of the mixture in the tin. Spoon the remaining mixture over the top and level the surface.

4 Bake the cake in the centre of the oven for 2–2¼ hours, or until a skewer comes out clean after being inserted into the cake. Cover with a sheet of baking parchment if it starts to brown. When cooked, remove the cake from the oven and leave to cool.

5 Remove the cake from the tin and peel away the lining paper. Spread the apricot glaze or jam over the top. Roll out half of the remaining marzipan to fit the top of the cake. Place it on the cake and smooth down, taking care not to trap any air pockets underneath. Pinch around the edges.

6 Divide the remaining marzipan into 11 pieces and roll each into a ball. Brush a little apricot glaze or jam onto the base of each and evenly space around the top of the cake. Place under a hot grill to brown the marzipan lightly. Remove from the grill and leave to cool before serving.

Cook’s tips
• The cake will keep in an airtight container for up to a week.
• If you have a choice of marzipan, choose white marzipan, which has a more natural flavour than golden marzipan.

 

 

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Easter Recipes & Crafts

Easter Recipes & Crafts

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Easter Recipes & Crafts

As a mummy (as of yesterday ‘Mum’! to my grown up five year-old) of three small children, I am usually insistent that we get outdoors and burn off some energy whatever the weather.

However, this weekend proved to be so bone-numbingly chilly that we retreated indoors and crafted. The final results were not always worthy of a country magazine, but we had fun none the less and our nearest and dearest will receive some almost-pretty Easter goodies next weekend.

Easter Bunny & ChickOne of our favourite projects was Easter Bunny & Chick from Buttonbag. They look very cute adorning the top of our mantelpiece.

I also treated myself to an hour alone (bliss) in our local town perusing the deli and flower shop for seasonal inspiration.

After choosing a few miniature daffs
and the ingredients for our famous
Simnel cake, our house is looking,
and smelling, particularly spring-like.

Shame the outside does not mirror this!

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> Try the Simnel Cake for yourself, it’s delicious. And this Fish Pie is perfect for Good Friday.

Easter recipes from Dairy Diary

 

Have a wonderful Easter everyone.

Simnel cake

One of the oldest Christian festivals, Easter marks Christ’s resurrection from the dead. Simnel cake has at some point been adopted as a traditional Easter cake.

The 11 marzipan balls on the top represent the apostles, minus the treacherous Judas.

Preparation time – 30 minutes
Cooking time – 2¼ hours
Calories per slice – 722 Kcal
Fat per slice – 30g
of which saturated – 13.2g
Makes – 11 slices
Suitable for vegetarians

Butter 250g (9oz), softened
Light muscovado sugar 250g (9oz)
Eggs 4
Plain flour 300g (11oz)
Baking powder 1 tsp
Ground mixed spice 2 tsp
Ground almonds 50g (2oz)
Luxury dried mixed fruit 500g (1lb 2oz)
Lemon 1, finely grated zest and 2 tbsp juice
White marzipan 500g (1lb 2oz)
Apricot glaze or sieved apricot jam 2 tbsp

1 Preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F/Gas 2 and line a 20cm (8in) cake tin with baking parchment.

2 Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time, adding a spoonful of the flour along with each egg. Sift in the remaining flour, baking powder and spice and fold the almonds, dried fruit and lemon zest and juice into the mixture. Spoon half into the cake tin and smooth the surface level.

3 Roll out one third of the marzipan until it’s a circle, just smaller than the cake tin, and lay it on top of the mixture in the tin. Spoon the remaining mixture over the top and level the surface.

4 Bake the cake in the centre of the oven for 2–2¼ hours, or until a skewer comes out clean after being inserted into the cake. Cover with a sheet of baking parchment if it starts to brown. When cooked, remove the cake from the oven and leave to cool.

5 Remove the cake from the tin and peel away the lining paper. Spread the apricot glaze or jam over the top. Roll out half of the remaining marzipan to fit the top of the cake. Place it on the cake and smooth down, taking care not to trap any air pockets underneath. Pinch around the edges.

6 Divide the remaining marzipan into 11 pieces and roll each into a ball. Brush a little apricot glaze or jam onto the base of each and evenly space around the top of the cake. Place under a hot grill to brown the marzipan lightly. Remove from the grill and leave to cool before serving.

Cook’s tips
• The cake will keep in an airtight container for up to a week.
• If you have a choice of marzipan, choose white marzipan, which has a more natural flavour than golden marzipan.

Recipe taken from Around Britain Dairy Cookbook available for a short period at just £2.99!

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Mother’s Day approaches

So Mother’s Day is nearly upon us. Do young children still give their mothers a posy of primroses and/or violets and a card they’ve made themselves? It’s a lovely tradition.

Happy Mother's DayMothering Sunday is the old-fashioned name for the day. Apparently, folk used to attend the largest church in their area on this day, their ‘mother’ church, and were said to have gone ‘mothering’.

Domestic servants and apprentices were given the day off (maybe the only one in the year) to go and visit their mothers. So although it may be a bit commercialised now, it was always a big deal!

Mother’s Day is always the fourth Sunday in Lent – over halfway through, so not long to go if you’ve given up something difficult to resist.

At one time a simnel cake was baked and kept for Easter. What restraint! Simnel cakes are covered in marzipan – try this delicious Simnel Cake recipe.

I’m planning to have a go at the Coffee Battenberg on page 111 of this year’s Dairy Diary, and there’s no chance that it’ll last till Easter.

I hope you all have a lovely day.

Marion
Dairy Diary Team.

 

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Easter Celebrations

Whoop whoop, we have a lovely long weekend to look forward to with some scrumptious celebrations!

I love Easter, with spring in the air; the mix of lovely pastel colours; the children’s excitement; and some quality family time. The countdown to the big event is on.

Here are some ideas you might like to try:

• Make Easter cards. These are so simple – ribbon interwoven (my current craft obsession) and taped to a piece of card, attached to a card blank with an egg sticker in the centre.

• Make marbled eggs. Isaac and I had great fun experimenting with colours and patterns. These can hang from ribbon on a few twigs, taking centre-stage on the dining table. For details see How to decorate Easter eggs

• If time allows, make some flowery bunting for one dining room wall – see How to make bunting flags

• Create an easy Easter egg hunt (let’s hope the bunny comes!) with a single word treasure hunt that children of all ages can enjoy.

• Buy a few pastel coloured flowers, cut the stems short and fill your favourite teacups with them to make the table extra-pretty.

So, get creative everyone, but most of all enjoy the long weekend. Let’s hope we get lots of sunshine!

And finally, cook a traditional free-range roast chicken with all the trimmings followed by a slab of this gorgeous Simnel cake. The 11 marzipan balls on the top represent the apostles, minus Judas.

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