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Rich Christmas Cake

February 11, 2015

Novelty Cake 

The requirements of Christmas food not only includes indulgence but the sense of character.  Christmas food is meant to have the wow factor to emphasize that it is a celebration.  Usually I keep the flavour of novelty cakes simple using tried and tested recipes, doing this makes it easier for me to focus on the decoration.  Like novelty cakes however, Christmas cakes need to be made in advance before being decorated and if the density of the cake is right it is possible to turn a Christmas cake into a novelty cake.  Rich fruit cakes are usually heavily decorated in fondant icing and this recipe in particular will have no difficulty in supporting a spectacular design.  A bonus is that it tastes fantastic too.  For a design such as a star to feed 15 people you will need to bake up to 3 cakes.

This recipe was provided by Good Housekeeping Cook’s Year (Ebury Press, 1995).

A Ghanaian Christmas

A Ghanaian Christmas

Ingredients:

150g glace cherries, 150g dried figs, 150g apricots, 150g dates, 150g raisins, 150g sultanas, 50g mixed peel, 175ml dark rum,175g roasted hazelnuts (skinned), 225g softened butter, grated rind of one lemon, 225g soft brown dark sugar, 4 eggs (beaten, 30ml black treacle, 225g plain white flour, 2 tsps ground mixed spice.

Method:

1. Line a cake tin (20 – 22 inches) with grease proof paper..
2. Rinse the cherries to remove all the syrup.
3. Drain and then dry on absorbent kitchen paper.
4. Roughly chop all the fruit including the mixed peel.
5. Soak the fruit and peel in 175 ml of the rum for 4 hours.
6. While the fruit is soaking blitz the hazelnuts in a food processor.  This also gives you time to  start preparing the cake decorations.
7. Beat the butter with the lemon rind until soft and pale.
8. Gradually beat in the sugar until mixed well.
9. Beat in the eggs a little at a time.
10. Beat in the treacle until evenly blended.
11. Sift in half the flour and spice and mix well folding it in the cake mixture carefully.
12. Fold in the hazelnuts and when evenly distributed add the rest of the flour.
13. Fold in all the fruit.
14. When all mixed together spoon into the prepared cake tin then level off the surface
15.  Bake at 15 degrees C for 2 1/2 – 3 hours.
16.  Pierce the surface a few times and pour in the remaining rum.  (Thought I was gonna drink it didn’t you.)
17.  Leave in the cake tin for an hour before turning out to cool on the wire rack.

Black Santa plays the drums

Black Santa plays the drums

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