The Cloak of St Martin Cake

St Martin of Tours is a well known European saint whose feast day is known simply as Martinmas Day. Wikipedia has this to say:

"St. Martin's Day (or Martinstag or Martinmas) is November 11th the feast day of St Martin of Tours who started out as a Roman soldier. He was baptized as an adult and became a monk. It is understood that he was a kind man who led a quiet and simple life. The most famous legend of his life is that he once cut his cloak in half to share with a beggar during a snowstorm, to save the beggar from dying of the cold. That night he dreamed that Jesus was wearing the half-cloak Martin had given away. Martin heard Jesus say to the angels: "Here is Martin, the Roman soldier who is not baptised; he has clothed me."

The cake I made above was inspired by this little image below from Heraldry of the World.

I used a simple recipe for a plain loaf cake:


2/3 c. butter

1 c. sugar

1 tsp. flavoring extract

2 eggs, beaten

1 2/3 c. plain flour

1/2 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking powder

1/2 c. milk

Cream butter, sugar, and flavoring together until light; beat the eggs and add to mixture. Sift flour, salt, and baking powder together; add alternately with the milk. Beat 1/2 minute or about 30 strokes. Bake in an oiled and floured loaf-cake pan 40 minutes at 350-375 degrees.

I added a few drops of red colouring to the cake as well.

Here it is, straight out of the oven.

Notice how I have cut the cake, each piece is thinner at one end, wider at the other.

I then proceeded to ice the cake with icing, made from icing sugar, a little butter and boiling water, I added a few drops of red colouring. I iced both pieces, top and sides.

Here is the cake iced. I've used licorice straps, ($2 a bag) cut thinner with scissors, I just copied the pattern in the image further above, very simple. I used wider straps for the cloaks cords on either side, once again, just being guided by the image.

A close up of the licorice straps.

The sword I made from cookie dough, using the recipe below. Eitherwise, to save time, just find a toy sword amongst the children's toys and use that instead, or even just a nice, big kitchen knife.


1/2 cup self raising flour
1/2 cup plain flour
Pinch salt
65g butter (2.29oz)
1/4 cup sugar
1 small egg ~ milk (if too dry)

Method: 1.Mix butter and sugar till light and fluffy 2.Add egg, flour and salt, mix well. If mixture is too dry then add some milk. 3.Knead lightly and roll out on a floured board as thinly as possible. 4. Cut out into the shape of a sword, use a ruler for the sides. 5. Bake in a moderate oven 350°f (180°c) for 15 minutes or until lightly browned.

I just used some of the left over icing for the sword and used a few lollies and some licorice for suitable decoration.

Editing to add Leslie's (The Vine and the Branches) beautiful Cloak of St Martin cake, a beautiful creation!

Wishing everyone a blessed Martinmas!
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  1. Anne, you are so creative! I think that this cake is an excellent way to end our feast.

  2. Wow, I'm so impressed! I would've never thought to be so creative in this particular way while teaching/celebrating about certain feast days. I love your site.

  3. This cake is another - beyound belief.......literally.......what a creative teacher you are! It is beautiful!

  4. This is perfect! The boys will be particularly delighted:)

  5. I love it, Anne! If we weren't having birthday cake on Friday I would be so tempted to make this! It's just gorgeous!

  6. What a wonderful cake! I've got to read ahead to get prepared to do things like this. Great job.

  7. We tried this cake tonight. It didn't come out too bad. Thanks!

  8. Forgot the link to a picture in my comment:

  9. You've done a lovely job Leslie! I'll pop a picture up into the main posting to share with others!

  10. Very ingenious Anne, congratulations!

    Liturgy of the Hours