In an completely out-of-character moment, I got ahead of myself last weekend and made a start on a Christmas cake. I would like to have done this on Sunday 25th, which is Stir-Up Sunday, but with a certain young lady's birthday celebrations being held that day, thought I would be unlikely to squeeze it in on the right day! I am sharing this recipe here as I used it last year and it really was delicious - moist and fruity and moreish.
|Last year's effort|
I began by soaking the fruit 'overnight'.
|700g mixed dried fruit, 100g glace cherries and 100g mixed peel soaked in 200ml hot, strong, black tea, 3 tablespoons whisky and 3 tablespoons marmalade|
Then I creamed together 225g butter and 225g golden caster.
4 eggs were lightly beaten and then gradually added to the mix, beating well after each addition.
225g plain flour, 1 tsp mixed spice and 1 tsp cinnamon were sifted together then folded into the mix...
Then the soaked fruit, and the grated rind of a lemon were folded through...
The mixture was then spooned into a 20cm round, double lined cake tin, levelled and baked at 160 degrees/ 140 Fan Oven/ Gas Mark 3 for 1 1/2 hours, then turned down to 140 degrees/ 120 Fan Oven/ Gas Mark 1 and baked for a further 1 1/2 hours till a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack in the tin. (Sorry - had given up with the camera by this time. Try to hide your disappointment!) Whilst still warm, use a skewer to pepper the cake with holes, then feed the cake with 50ml hot, strong black tea into which has been stirred 2 tsp sugar and 1 tbsp whisky (or orange juice).
If you're making the cake ahead of time, you can feed it with a fresh swig of hot toddy each week, but take care not to make the cake soggy!
The cake can be kept for a month, well-wrapped in an airtight container in a cool, dry place. If short of time you can make and decorate the cake the same day.