The original recipe comes from a notebook kept by the Morton family who ran a bakery in Hemel Hempstead, Hertfordshire, between 1890 and 1912.

This recipe, entitled “4d cakes”, indicates how much each 1lb cakes should be sold for; the modern equivalent would be around £1.30.

Makes 10 x 450g/1lb cakes

Margarine or lard - 450g/1lb

Sugar - 900g/2lb

Self-raising flour - 1.3kg/3lb

Currants - 1.12kg/2½lb

Marmalade - 225g/½lb

Milk - 520ml/2 pints


Cream the margarine and the sugar.

Add the other ingredients and stir.

Pour into 800ml/1½-pint loaf tins and sprinkle the top with sugar.

Bake at 170ºC for 50 minutes.