Banbury Cakes

Banbury Cakes


  • 500g all butter puff pastry (1 pound) chilled
  • 120g demerara sugar (3/4 cup, turbinado sugar)
  • 60g butter (1/4 cup)
  • 120g sultana raisins (scant cup)
  • 120g Zante dried currants (scant cup)
  • 60g mixed candied peel, finely chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1 tsp mixed spice (see note)
  • 75g granulated sugar (1/3 cup)


  1. Preheat the oven to 200*C/400*F/gas mark 6. Line two baking sheets with baking parchment.  Set aside.
  2. Measure all of the fruit, spices, peel and butter into a bowl along with the demerara sugar.  Mix well together, using your hands, until the mixture begins to clump and you can shape it into balls. Shape into 9 evenly sized balls.
  3. Roll the chilled puff pastry out on a lightly floured surface to  a 15 inch square, no more than 1/8 inch thick.  Cut into nine 5-inch squares.  Place a ball of fruit filling into the centre of each square.  Bring four corners up over the filling to meet in the middle and pinch shut.  Pinch all of the 4 sides shut as well.  Flip over and lightly flatten into a circle in the palm of your hand.  Using a rolling pin, with the folds on the bottom, gently roll into circles which are 4 inches in diameter, and about 1/2 inch thick. 
  4. Brush the tops lightly with some water.  Measure the granulated sugar into a bowl and lightly press the wet tops of the cakes into the sugar.
  5. Place onto the baking sheets, leaving plenty of space in between. Using a sharp knife, make three slashes into the top of each.
  6. Bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes.  Allow to cool on the baking sheets.  Best eaten on the day.


You can easily make your own mixed spice: Combine 1 TBS ground cinnamon, 1 tsp each of ground coriander and nutmeg, 1/2 tsp of ground ginger, 1/4 tsp each of ground cloves and all spice. Mix well and store in an airtight container out of the light for up to 6 months.

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