3-Layer Light Fruit Cake with Orange Buttercream and Amaretti Crumb

Have I mentioned on the blog just how much I really don’t like heavy dense fruit cakes? And no matter how light you make it, it is always that too heavy. Last week I posted the recipe to my Light Fluted Fruit Cake, a great alternative and useful recipe for when you want a light and quick fruit cake.

I’m taking that same fruit cake, baking it in sandwich tins, filling it with an orange spiced buttercream and coating it in crushed amaretti biscuits for another modern take on the fruit cake. You can the recipe for the fruit cake by clicking here; to make this cake, you will need 3 layers of this cake so multiply the recipe up by 3 and use 20cm round sandwich tins lined with parchment instead. Into the cake, I add the flesh of half a Clementine, 2 rings of tinned pineapple and half a grated apple in total. Because of this extra moisture, an extra 60g self-raising flour to the mixture as well as a small pinch of baking powder.


This is the final stop on the Andrew in the Kitchen Christmas Recipe Line and we’re finishing with a showstopping cake. To decorate the cake on top, I used the coloured sugar from Mamy Sugarcraft to create a holly shape and I used the finely sliced zest of an orange to mark the outline. In retrospect I would have candied the orange peel making the top all edible but picking off the orange zest before serving isn’t too much of a problem.

3 layers of Light Fruit Cake baked in 20cm sandwich tins

90g margarine

2 tbsp Sweet Freedom syrup – read my review of their product here

240g icing sugar

1 tsp mixed spice

1 tsp cinnamon

Zest of 1 orange

Juice of 1 orange

A selection of sprinkles – check out Mamy Sugarcraft and their huge range here!

50g amaretti biscuits, crushed finely

Prepare your 3 layers of sponge and allow them to cool completely.


For the spiced buttercream, cream together the margarine with the syrup until it is smooth and thick. Gradually add in the icing sugar and spices, beating well between each addition to produce a light, fluffy and freckled buttercream that when you taste it is not powdery or uneven. Then add in the orange zest and some juice and mix through until your buttercream is smooth, soft and spreadable.

It’s time to start assembling the cake. Place one layer of the cake on a larger circle of baking parchment and fill with about a quarter of your buttercream. Use a palette knife to spread out the buttercream into an even layer. Top with some Christmas sprinkles and then repeat with the rest of the cake layers.


Cover the cake with the remaining half of the buttercream, making sure that both the sides and top are evenly covered. Use a palette knife to smooth the edges by holding it vertically and then spinning the cake around. Then press the crushed amaretti crumbs all around the edge, being more forceful than you think is required to make sure they stick. Use a clean palette knife to scrape away the unstuck crumbs and transfer the cake to the cake stand.


Using coloured sugar, create a holly design with 3 red circles and 3 leaves. If you wish to pipe the design on instead rather than go freestyle, use green icing to mark out the outline of the holly leaves.

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