If you're looking to serve a canapé with a Christmas twist, what could be better than a mini Christmas cake?

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Mixed up with a dollop of whimsy as well as the usual ingredients, this recipe comes from food writer and campaigner Rachel Green, who cooked up this creation for Fairburn’s eggs.

Ingredients 

  • 1 kilo dried fruit (to include plenty of cherries, cranberries, chopped apricots, mixed peel etc to make it a luxury fruit mix)
  • 275g plain flour
  • 250g butter, softened
  • 4 large Fairburn’s British Blue eggs
  • 250g soft dark brown sugar
  • 1tbsp black treacle
  • 60g ground almonds
  • 1tsp vanilla
  • 1tsp almond extract, optional
  • ¼ tsp grated nutmeg
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp mixed spice
  • 4 tbsp medium sherry
  • ½ lemon zest and a dash of the juice
  • ½ orange grated

Method

Preheat the oven to 140C/275G/Gas 1, and line a deep 20cm square tin with a double layer of baking parchment then grease with butter.

Combine the dried fruit and candied peel in a large bowl. Add the sherry and stir in to mix well. Cover and leave overnight.

Put the remaining ingredients in a large bowl. Beat with a hand-held electric mixer until well combined. Stir in the soaked fruit with any soaking liquid.

Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin. Level the top and cover with a disc of baking paper. Bake for 4-5 hours until firm to the touch and a skewer pushed into the middle comes out clean. Leave the cake to cool in the tin.

With the baking done, it’s time to make the mini-Christmas cakes. Cut out small disks of cake using a cutter then top the mini cakes with a disc of marzipan.

Cover the top of the mini-cakes with royal icing, and let it drip down the side of the cakes.

Top off with a whole pecan nut sprayed with edible gold, or dried orange peel or cranberries. For the finishing touch, dust the plate (or piece of slate) with more edible gold once you’re finished.