About this recipe:This recipe makes enough for 24 luxurious mini fruit cakes. They really do make a thoughtful Christmas gift for neighbours, work colleagues or teachers, or as part of a gift basket. You can decorate them differently by making one for each family member which makes it a lot more fun.
Place the raisins, currants, sultanas and glace cherries in a tubberware container. Pour over brandy and stir in orange and lemon rind. Cover and set aside for 2 or 3 days to soak. Stir or give it a shake every so often (if you remember).
When you are ready to make the cakes: Preheat the oven to 140 C / Gas 1. Line a tray with 24 mini paper cake cases or lightly grease 24 ramekins.
Beat the butter and sugar until well mixed and light in colour. Add the beaten eggs and treacle. Stir in chopped almonds, self raising flour, plain flour, ground almonds and mixed spice.
Bake in the centre of preheated oven for 1 1/2 hours or until a skewer inserted in the centre of the mini cakes comes our clean.
Set mini cakes aside to cool in their paper liners. Store in airtight tins or wrap them tightly in greaseproof paper and foil and freeze them. Wait at least a week or 10 days before removing paper and decorating.
To decorate: Brush each cake with warm jam and let cool. Roll out marzipan between 2 sheets of clingfilm. Use a biscuit or cookie cutter to stamp out circles of marzipan. Arrange a marzipan disc on top of the jam on each mini fruit cake. For best results, store in an airtight tin or container overnight before finishing the final decoration.
Roll out ready to roll fondant between 2 sheets of clingfilm. Use a crimped cookie cutter to stamp out 24 circles. Arrange each one on top of a mini cake. Decorate with more coloured fondant shapes such as snowflakes, holly leaves or stars. Sprinkle coloured sugar for extra colour, if needed.
Place each cake in a cellophane bag and tie with ribbon.