Naughty but nice and no need for cooking, this delicious dessert from James Martin makes an excellent ending to any meal.


  • 16 – 18 sponge fingers

  • ¼ pt milk

  • 3 tbsp brandy

  • Filling

  • 4oz unsalted butter

  • 4oz caster sugar

  • 4oz ground almonds

  • 3oz brandy

  • Decoration

  • Toasted flaked almonds

  • Red glace cherries

  • angelica


  • Almond filling:

  • 1.

    Cream unsalted butter with the caster sugar and gradually beat in the ground almonds and the brandy and set aside until required.

  • Assemble the cake:

  • 1.

    Put the milk into a soup plate and flavour with brandy. Dip the sponge fingers into this mixture working with a few at a time and leaving them to soak only momentarily. Arrange half the fingers side by side in an oblong dish.

  • 2.

    Spread the fingers with the almond filling approx. 1 inch thick. Neaten around the sides.

  • 3.

    Finish the top with a second row of the moistened fingers. Put in fridge overnight but a shorter period will do

  • 4.

    Before serving swirl lightly whipped cream over the top of the cake and decorate with pieces of cherries and angelica.

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