We all have our favourite Christmas Cake recipe, this is mine that belonged to my mother, and probably her mother before that. I have been making it for as long as I can remember, and its foolproof. Fruit cakes do require a bit of time in the making, so prepare for a morning in the kitchen. I normally make a really large one, but this year we will be in the USA for Christmas, so a little one will do just fine for the weeks before we go away. I like to make mine a month before Christmas and soak it each week with a little more brandy. You dont need to use any alcohol, but it definitely makes the cake moist and oh so festive.
It can be decorated the traditional way with marzipan and fondant and I made a wreath of rosemary and thyme with red stars. Just add a few Christmas decorations if you dont have time to do anything fancy. But I suggest you get baking now so that your cake is well soaked for Christmas Day.
Happy start to the Festive Baking Season
- 875ml (500g packet or 31/2 cups) mixed cake fruit
- 250ml (1 cup) brown sugar
- 125ml (1/2cup) chopped dates
- 125g (1/2 cup) butter
- 250ml (1 cup) pure apricot juice in a box
- 125ml (1/2cup) brandy or if you dont want to use alcohol apricot juice
- 125ml (1/2cup) chopped glace cherries
- 100g chopped pecan nuts
- 2 eggs beaten one at a time
- 500ml (2 cups) cake flour
- 12,5ml (1 Tablespoon) cocoa powder
- 5ml (1 teaspoon) mixed spice
- 3ml (1/2teaspoon) salt
- 5ml (1 teaspoon) baking powder
- Preheat oven to 160ºC/320ºF.
- Boil mixed fruit, brown sugar , chopped dates, butter and apricot juice for 20 minutes.
- Cool slightly and then add the brandy, cherries and nuts into the fruit mix.
- Fold in the eggs, one at a time.
- Sift all the dry ingredients together.
- Fold the dry ingredients into the fruit mix.
- Turn the mixture into a lined 20cm (8in) round tin and bake for approximately 2 hours.
- Test with a skewer to see if the cake is cooked through before removing from the oven.
- This recipe can be doubled up and put into a 25.5cm(10inch) square tin.
- Allow to cool in the tin.