Tunis Christmas Cake – Delicious Christmas Cake Recipe

(from the UK )

A Madeira cake with a topping of a thick layer of chocolate and decoration of marzipan fruits is known as a Tunis cake.

This cake is traditionally eaten during Christmas. The cake dates back to Edwardian times, and it was initially baked in the United Kingdom by Mcvities in the 1950s.

However, its name is thought to have originated way back, during the carnage’s wars with the Roman Empires.

After a victory in the battles, the Tunis soldiers celebrated with wine and cake. Explaining why the Tunis cake is baked for celebrations.

The cakes were commercially produced by Macfarlane Langs which was a Scottish bakery in the 1930s before the bakery joined its operations with McVitie & Price in 1948.

Following the merging of the two, they came up with a company known as United Biscuits.

Tunis cakes are now seasonally sold by some supermarkets and food stores in the United Kingdom.

It is important to note that the original recipe did not include toppings of chocolate.

Below is the original recipe, baked in the 1940s.


For the cake


  1. 150g Unsalted Butter
  2. 150g Caster sugar
  3. 1 Grated rind lemon
  4. 375g Ground almonds
  5. 200g Plain flour
  6. 2 Teaspoons baking powder
  7. 2 Tablespoons of orange juice
  8. A small pinch of table salt


  1. 6 oz Unsalted Butter
  2. 6 oz Caster sugar
  3. 1 Grated rind Lemon
  4. 3 Eggs
  5. 3 oz Ground almonds
  6. 8 oz Plain flour
  7. 2 Teaspoons baking powder
  8. 2 Tablespoons of orange juice
  9. A small pinch of table salt

For the topping


  1. 200g Good quality dark chocolate
  2. 50g Unsalted Butter
  3. 1.5 Tablespoons of warm water
  4. Imperial/American
  5. 8 oz good quality dark chocolate
  6. 2 oz Unsalted Butter
  7. 1.5 Tablespoons of warm water

For the Buttercream icing


  1. 100g sifted icing sugar
  2. 25g Softened butter
  3. 2 Tablespoons of orange juice
  4. Food coloring


  1. 4 oz Sifted icing sugar
  2. 10 oz Softened butter
  3. 2 Tablespoons of Orange juice
  4. Food coloring
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For the cake

Mix the butter and caster sugar until the mixture is smooth and fluffy.

Put the eggs, and with every egg, put a tablespoon of flour and mix properly.

Mix the remaining flour with salt and add orange juice.

Transfer the mixture into a 20cm thick cake tin while carefully smoothening the top.

Set your cooker’s temperature to 170°C to bake and if you are using a fan oven, regulate the temperature to 150°C for a period of one hour and thirty minutes until the mixture turns gold in color.

You should also check that the cake does not stick to the sides of the cake tin.

Wait for the cake to cool for a minimum of ten minutes and get it out of the tin and wait further for a minimum of ten hours before your slab is completely cooled.

For the topping

Pour the cream to a saucepan and heat it to an almost boiling point, break the chocolate into small pieces and add the pieces into a bowl with water and place the container over a basin of hot water for the chocolate to melt.

Leave for ten minutes and stir until the mixture is smooth.

Wait for it to cool.

Decorating the cake

Wrap the cake around with a double-thick piece of paper that is grease-proof and ensure that it coils six centimeters above the top of the cake.

Pour the molten chocolate on the surface of the cake and carefully smoothen (you should not hasten this) and leave for a minimum of twelve hours.

Tunis Christmas Cake Decoration

Carefully remove the grease-proof piece of paper.

Mix the sifted icing sugar, butter, orange juice, and food coloring until the mixture is smooth, which forms the Buttercream.

Utilizing the use of a piping bag with its nozzle shaped like a star, pipe circles of the buttercream around and at the surface of the cake.

Originally, Tunis cake was decorated using either a small banana, orange, or apple that was made from marzipan.

The decorations were placed at the center of the cake, and this decoration has in time been replaced by the buttercream circles that are commonly used in Tunis cakes today.

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Cooking the Tunis Christmas cake is a laborious task. The cake itself, the topping and the decoration involve a lot of steps.

It’s common to forget a few steps when you are making this cake after some time gap. So, in that case, you should bookmark this page and revisit when you want to make this recipe.

All the steps have been proof-read by me so you can definitely use the recipe without any issue.

Word Cloud for Tunis Christmas Cake

The following is a collection of the most used terms in this article on Tunis Christmas Cake. This should help in recalling related terms as used in this article at a later stage for you.

Tunis Christmas Cake
  1. https://in.pinterest.com/pin/224546731401536078/?lp=true
  2. https://www.instructables.com/id/Tunis-Cake-A-Delicious-Christmas-Cake-Recipe/
  3. http://www.epicureansanswer.com/tunis-cake-2/recipe-epicureans-answer-tunis-cake/

Last Updated : 24 November, 2023

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10 thoughts on “Tunis Christmas Cake – Delicious Christmas Cake Recipe”

  1. I appreciate the detailed recipe. It’s helpful to have specific instructions to follow when attempting a new recipe.

  2. The simplicity of the ingredients is surprising given how rich and flavorful the cake is. It’s truly a unique recipe.

  3. The history of the Tunis cake is truly fascinating. It’s amazing how traditions and recipes are passed down through generations.

  4. The history and tradition behind the Tunis cake is important to preserve. It’s a part of culinary heritage.

  5. I think the cake would lose some of its charm without the marzipan fruit decorations. It’s a shame to see them replaced.

  6. This recipe seems quite complex, but the end result must be absolutely delicious. I can’t wait to give it a try!

  7. I’ve tried making this before and the process is quite tedious. I’m not sure it’s worth the effort, to be honest.

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