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Gluten Free Easter Simnel Cake

This recipe is Vegetarian, Gluten free, Wheat free and Dairy free.

ingredients

serves 8 - 16
170 g (6 oz) 3/4 cup of Dairy free margarine
170 g (6 oz) generous 3/4 cup of caster (superfine) sugar
3 large free-range eggs and 1 extra egg white
115 g (4 oz) 3/4 cup of rice flour
115 g (4 oz) 3/4 cup of maize flour
Pinch of salt
1 heaped teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon of freshly grated nutmeg
100 g (3 1/2 oz) 1/2 cup of glace" cherries, cut into quarters
55 g (2 oz) 1/3 cup of cut mixed peel, chopped
255 g (9 oz) 1 3/4 cups of currants
100 g (3 1/2 oz) 3/4 cups of sultanas (golden raisins)
Finely grated rind of 1 lemon
Lemon juice if necessary
500 g (1 lb 1 oz) of ready-to-roll Gluten free marzipan
130 g (4 1/2 oz) of ready-to-roll Gluten free marzipan, for the 11 decorative balls

method

Baking parchment (wax paper) and string 18 cm (7 inch) round cake tin, greased and lined with baking parchment (wax paper) ribbon to decorate the cake

1. Preheat the oven to 150°C (300°F) Gas mark 2

2. Beat the margarine and sugar in a food processor until fluffy.

3. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl.

4. In another bowl, lightly whisk the 3 whole eggs, then gradually beat them into the creamed ingredients.

5. Sift the flours, salt and spices over the surface and fold into the mixture using a metal spoon.

6. Add all the fruit and the lemon rind, folding together to give a smooth dropping consistency. if the mixture is too firm, add a little more lemon juice.

7. Divide the 500 g (1 lb 10 oz) marzipan in half. lightly dust a surface with the icing (confectioners') sugar and roll out one half to a 16 cm (6 1/2 inch) circle.

8. Spoon half the cake mixture into the prepared tin.

9. Place the round of marzipan on top and cover with the remaining cake mixture.

10. Press down gently with the back of a spoon to level the surface.

11. Tie a double thickness of baking parchment (wax paper) round the outside of the tin.

12. Bake in the oven for about 2 1/2 hours.

13. When it is cooked the cake should be a rich brown colour and firm to the touch.

14. Cool in the tin for about 1 hour and then turn it out. Ease off the baking parchment (wax paper) and leave to cool completely on a wire rack.

15. Roll the remaining marzipan into a 16 cm (6 1/2 inch) circle.

16. Lightly beat the egg white in a small bowl and brush a little of it over the top of the cake.

17. Place the circle of marzipan on top of the cake and crimp the edges with your fingertips.

18. Use the 125 g (4 1/2 oz) of marzipan to make 11 small balls. Use the palm of your clean hands to make the balls smooth and even.

19. fix the 11 balls around the top edge of the cake with a little more of the beaten egg white.

20. Brush the marzipan with the remaining egg white and place under a hot grill (broiler) for 1 - 2 minutes until the marzipan balls are well browned.

21 Tie a ribbon around the cake and store in an airtight container for up to a week.

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