It's quite well documented that I'm not the biggest fan of fruit cake or marzipan but I do like marzipan cooked into cakes. Marzipan gives it a chewy texture that I can't resist hence my Simnel Scones recipe. Nigella does a delicious Simple Almond Cake in her Domestic Goddess book that really is simple to make and irresistible to eat and it's all down to the marzipan.
So this recipe is almost like a Simnel cake but I think a little lighter to eat. The warm spices give it the flavours of hot cross buns and it's just as moreish warm from the oven or cold if it lasts that long.
Heat the oven to 160C fan and line a 2lb loaf tin, I use ready made loaf liners. Cream together 110g Butter with 110g Sugar. Then add 225g Self Raising Flour, 225g Mixed Fruit, 2 Eggs, 50ml Milk,
1 tsp Cinnamon and 1/2 tsp Mixed Spice. Mix everything well till combined.
Now cut 80g Marzipan into small cubes and put to one side, I like the natural whiter marzipan but you could use the yellow version if you prefer. Put half the cake mixture into the loaf tin then top with 1/3 of the marzipan cubes. Now add the rest of the mixture and finish with the remaining marzipan cubes, press them in lightly so you can still see them.
Bake for 50-60 minutes till cooked through. To finish, warm
1 tbsp Honey and brush the top of your cake with it. Use another 80g Marzipan to decorate the top. Divide it into 2 pieces and roll them into sausages, gently twist them together to form a rope and place them on the cake to make your cross. You could leave it like that or give it a quick blast with a cooks blow torch. If you don't have a blow torch grill it, but keep an eye on it so you don't burn your cake.