Impress your guests this Christmas and create the perfect party spread, with this quick and easy version of the classic Christmas cake, from our Designer at Debenhams Ashley Thomas.

Drizzled with brandy, topped with icing and perfect to get you in the Christmas spirit, this traybake is the easiest way to welcome in guests throughout the festive season. Serve them up on some of our At Home with Ashley Thomas serving plates and you’re ready to go…

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You’ll need…

For the fruit cake…

175g Butter

175g Golden caster sugar

3 Large eggs

175g Plain flour

1 ? tsp mixed spice

500g Pre-soaked mixed dried fruit

200g Glacé cherries

To decorate…

Apricot jam

500g ready to roll marzipan

500g ready to roll royal icing sugar

Silver balls

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To make…

Preheat the oven to 170oC

Soften the butter in the microwave for 30 seconds, add the sugar and mix well.

Beat in the eggs bit by bit and mix in the flour and mixed spice.

Cut the cherries in half and then add these along with the dried fruit.

Add baking paper to the bottom of a traybake tin, mine measures 11 x 7 inches.

Add the cake mixture to the tin and bake for 45-50mins.

Allow to cool completely. Then take the cake carefully out of the tin, I flipped mine onto a glass worktop saver. But this can be tricky as it is a heavy cake!

Meanwhile take the marzipan and roll out to the size of you traybake tin. This requires some serious muscle power! I’d recommend to draw around your traybake tin first on some baking paper. Warm the marzipan slightly in the cooling over and add it to the baking paper. Then add another sheet of baking paper to the top of the marzipan (so it is between two sheets) and get rolling!

After this do the same with your royal icing and roll out to the size of your traybake tin.

Finally piece it all together, first add a few spoons of the jam to a small bowl and warm in the microwave for 15seconds.

Take a brush and brush the top of the cake with jam.

Add your rolled out marzipan to the top of your cake and then your rolled out icing.

Trim the sides, taking off all the excess marzipan and icing.

Top with silver balls and cut into slices.

Ta da! You are now a Christmas domestic goddess!

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