One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A rich fruit cake, typically with a marzipan covering and decoration, eaten especially at Easter or during Lent.
- ‘He is equally worried about the demise of traditional Yorkshire food, including such delights as Yorkshire relish, plot toffee, simnel cake and curd tart.’
- ‘However, if you are seeking something more robust, guests at Ashes Barn will be greeted with a slice of simnel cake for tea - and the obligatory chocolate eggs are saved until Easter morning.’
- ‘She baked simnel cake, parkin and scones and made ‘mintoes’ out of powdered milk, syrup and peppermint.’
- ‘Very many thanks for a multitude of letters, and for unfailing generosity, courtesy, tea and simnel cake.’
- ‘As an ingredient in baking and flour confectionery, marzipan is an integral part of several traditional recipes, for instance stollen and simnel cakes.’
- ‘Ah, and I probably should have tried doing the research before I started writing, as the first site Google finds claims that simnel cakes are to do with Mothering Sunday, and should have 11 balls.’
Mid 17th century: simnel from Old French simenel, based on Latin simila or Greek semidalis ‘fine flour’.
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