Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Simnel cake!

To go with our wonderful Mother's Day Cards that we made the other day for Granny and Nanna, we attempted a bit of traditional baking.  A Simnel cake was traditionally made by young girls working in service as Mothering Sunday was the one day of the year they were allowed home, however now it is more commonly and Easter cake thanks to the Eleven marzipan balls on top representing the twelve apostles minus Judas!

350g currants
100g Sultanas
75g mixed candied peel, chopped
225g Plain flour
5ml ground cinnamon
5ml ground nutmeg
175g butter or marg
175g caster sugar
3 eggs beaten
milk to mix
apricot jam or beaten egg to use under marzipan top
Lined 18cm cake tin
Oven 170c for first hour 150c for final three hours

First of all we creamed together the butter and sugar, I really wanted Alyssa to get really involved in this as I am hoping that it is something we can do every year for mother's day to bring bake the Simnel Cake tradition a little bit, so once Arthur and I softened it up a bit we let her have a go, then we tipped in the rest of the ingredients and mixed it all up into a scrummy cake mixture, so scrummy in fact that Alyssa had a cheeky taste!! I sense trouble baking with these two in future, lots of extra mix needed to replace any they both 'taste!'

Once it was all cooked and cooled, we had a bit of time in the playroom whist this happened, we set about rolling out the marzipan and making the balls to goon top, Alyssa really seemed to enjoy having a go at spreading, and Arthur enjoyed stealing the marzipan!  I also let Alyssa have a little go at rollingout the marzipan with the rolling pin.  Arthur had the very important job of making the balls, as Alyssa is too small to be able to attempt them, so we had 22 varying sized, individually unique little balls to go on top.  All that was needed then was to brown it under the grill with a brushing of milk, and try not to eat it!!

Creaming the butter and sugar

Cheeky taste!!

Spreading the jam (with mummy's help!)

Adding the balls



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