Rich pound-cake; twelfth, or bride-cakes: butter two pounds twelve ounces, sugar one pound twelve ounces, currants five pounds, citron one pound and a-half, almonds six ounces, nutmegs, mace, and cinnamon, of equal parts, in powder, two ounces; eggs twenty, brandy half a pint - these proportions allow for the cake being iced. If more sugar is preferred, the quantity must be the same, as the butter; but less is used in this instance, that the cake may be light, and also to allow for the fruit, which would make it too sweet. Double the quantity of almonds may be used if required, as some persons prefer more.
Warm a smooth pan, large enough for the mixture; put in the butter, and reduce it to a fine cream, by working it about the pan with your hand. In summer the pan need not be warmed, as it can be reduced to a cream without; but in the winter keep the mixture as warm as possible, without oiling the butter. Add the sugar and mix it well with the butter, until it becomes white and feels light in the hand. Break in two or three eggs at a time, and work the mixture well, before any more is added. Continue doing this until they are all used and it becomes light; then add the spirit, currants, peel, spice, and almonds, some or most of these being previously cut in thin slices, the peel having also been cut into small thin strips and bits. When these are incorporated, mix in the flour lightly: put it in a hoop with paper over the bottom and round the sides, and placed on a baking-plate. Large cakes require three or four pieces of stiff paper round the sides; and if the cake is very large, a pipe or funnel, made either of stiff paper or tin, and well buttered, should be put in the centre, and the mixture placed round it; this is to allow the middle of the cake to be well baked, otherwise the edge would be burnt two or three inches deep before it could be properly done. Place the tin plates containing the cake on another, the surface of which is covered an inch or two thick with sawdust or fine ashes to protect the bottom. Bake it in an oven at a moderate heat. The time required to bake it will depend on the state of the oven and the size of the cake. When the cake is cold, proceed to ice it. (See Icings for Cakes.) Wedding-cakes have generally, first, a coating on the top of almond icing; when this is dry, the sides and top are covered with royal or white icing. Fix on any gum paste or other ornaments whilst it is wet; and when dry, ornament it with piping, orange-blossoms, ribbon, etc.; the surface and sides are often covered with small knobs of white sugar candy whilst the icing is wet.
Twelfth-cakes are iced with white or coloured icing, and decorated with gum paste, plaster ornaments, piping-paste, rings, knots, and fancy papers, etc., and piped.