17gg butter, softened
175g golden caster sugar
Grated zest of 1 large orange
3 medium free-range eggs
175g self-raising flour sifted
½ teaspoon mixed spice
50g chopped mixed peel
1 tablespoon whisky (preferably malt)
16-20 whole blanched almonds
1. Cream the butter, sugar and orange zest thoroughly until light and fluffy then beat in the eggs one at a time, adding a teaspoon of the weighed flour with each egg to prevent curdling.
2. Sift in the flour, spice and pinch of salt. Fold everything together gently, then stir in the dried fruits and mixed peel, together with the whisky.
3. For the cake, spoon the mixture into a buttered, lined 18cm cake tin, levelling the top. Bake the cake in a pre-heated over (150ºC/300ºF/Gas Mark 2) for 1½ hours, then take it out and arrange the almonds on top in two circles. Return to the oven and continue to bake for a further 45 minutes (2¼ hours altogether). Or spoon into 10 coffee shop-style muffin wrappers (or large muffin cases) set in a bun tin. Bake the cupcakes at 160ºC/325ºF/Gas Mark 3 for about 35 minutes.
4. Once done (insert a wooden skewer into centre: there should be no raw batter on it), remove the cake or cupcake to a wire rack to cool completely before decanting.
Recipe courtesy of Scottish Baking by Sue Lawrence