Preheat the oven to 160 °C and grease two 22 cm cake tins with margarine or butter.
Line with a double layer of baking paper and grease again.Cake
Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
Add the eggs one by one, beating well after each addition.
Sift the cake flour and cream of tartar together and sir into the butter mixture.
Dissolve bicarbonate of soda in the milk and stir into the mixture.
Add the peel, currants, cinnamon and almonds. Mix well. (If the batter is too stiff add a little brandy.)
Divide the batter into three equal parts.
Add a few drops of red food colouring to one part, a few drops of orange essence to the second pat and a heaped teaspoon of sifted cocoa powder to the third pat.
Divide the pink part between the two tins, spreading evenly.
Spoon the orange-flavoured batter on top and end with the chocolate batter.
Cover the tins and place each in a cardboard box (see end of recipe).
Bake for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until done (a testing skewer inserted into the centre of each cake should come out clean).
Cool the cakes in the tins, pour a tot of brandy over each and wrap in aluminium foil.
Store in airtight containers.Icing
Mix the icing sugar with just enough lemon juice to form a drop icing.
Decorate the cakes with the icing and leave to set.
Baking in a cardboard box
Choose a hard cardboard box large enough to hold the cake tin and cover the box with three layers of brown paper. Cover the tin and the unbaked cake mixture with a thick piece of aluminium foil or a double layer of brown paper and place in the box. Place the box in the oven and bake as described in the recipe. Note: this method is suitable only for electric ovens.