Marzipan Simnel Cake – an English Easter Classic

Marzipan Simnel Cake – an English Easter Classic

To all baking goddesses out there, here is my version of a very classic English Easter treat – the Simnel Cake.

I have to be honest I found the pronunciation of this cake quite challenging. For some reason my ‘s’ sound is always too long and people never quite understand what I’m talking about! Go figure!

However, I wanted to rise to the challenge of baking a more traditional, well we can say it, old-fashioned cake with a pretty as a picture topping! Its a little bit more fiddly but the end result is well worth it!

Remember, patience is a virtue and for sure you can be a patience virtuoso at Easter. Our goal is to impress family and friends with an amazing looking cake with a fruity, zesty, almondy taste! Have a wonderful time!

Simnel Cake With Marzipan

Important – The oven temperature MUST be 150°C for this cake – any higher and the cake will burn.

Ingredients For Simnel Cake:

  • 500g golden marzipan, cut in a half, 250g set aside then cubed the other 250g and dust them with a pinch of flour.
  • 300g flour sifted with 3 teaspoon baking powder
  • 6 organic eggs
  • 200g soft brown sugar
  • 250g butter melted
  • 100g chopped pecan nuts roasted for 15 minutes in the oven
  • 600g mixed dried fruit marinated for ½ hour with 6 tablespoon of liquor and 2 tablespoon of orange juice
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • grated zest of 1 orange
  • 1 teaspoon of mixed spices
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 1 teaspoon almond essence
  • 8 pieces of candied ginger from a jar coarsely chopped + 1 tablespoon of the juice
  • 250g ready to roll icing
  • 2 tablespoon jam
  • 1 egg gently beaten with a tablespoon of cream

Instructions For Simnel Cake:

  • Preheat the oven.
  • Lightly butter a 23cm (9 inch) spring-form cake tin and line the base and the side with baking paper.
  • With an electric mixer, beat the sugar and butter until nice and creamy then add 1 egg at the time at the mixture.
  • Add the sifted flour and baking powder.
  • Then add the dried fruit, citrus zest, pecan, mixed spices, floured cubed marzipan, vanilla and almond essence, candied ginger and juice. Mix all together with a wooden spoon or spatula.
  • Using a rubber spatula, spoon the mixture into the prepared tin, levelling the surface with the back of the spatula.
  • Place the cake in the oven and bake for 1¾-2¼ hours at the lower temperature of 150°C
  • Start to check the cake after 1½ hours – the cake is cooked when the centre feels springy when lightly pressed.
  • When it is cooked, leave it in the tin for 30 minutes before turning it out on to a wire rack to cool or it might crumble.
  • For the cake decoration, roll out the icing on a surface gently dusted with icing suagr to avoid sticking.
  • The icing must cover the top of the cake so use a same size bottom tin as guideline.
  • Then brush the top of the cake with a tablespoon of jam and fit the icing on the top pressing it down all round with a rolling pin to level it as much as possible. Trim off any overhanging pieces.
  • Roll out the reserved marzipan on a surface dusted with icing sugar to a rectangle about 25 x 15 cm, then cut it into 12 long strips about 1 cm wide for the lattice topping.
  • When assembling the lattice on top, snip off any overhanging marzipan with scissors making sure that you have pressed the edges down well.
  • Brush the egg and cream mixture on the cake and put under the grill at 150° for a few minutes, watching very carefully to ensure that it doesn’t burn but finish off with a nice toasted brown colour.
  • This last bit is all about timing and gently turning the cake to ensure an even colour result.

Enjoy your Easter with this Marzipan Simnel Cake!

Marzipan Simnel Cake

Marzipan Simnel Cake


  1. hi ,the cake looks so nice and want to taste ,but its also sounds hard to make for me .
    in fact i am one cook ,now cook pasta in one intaly food restaurant in shangha ,China .

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