Chunky Christmas Cake
8 oz softened butter
8 oz dark brown sugar
8 oz self-raising flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 teaspoons mixed spice (below)
2 oz whole almonds, halved
2 oz pecans
2 oz Brazil nuts, quartered
2 oz dried apricots, roughly chopped
8 oz sultanas
4 oz glace cherries, halved
2 oz candid peel
3 fl.oz milk
zest 1 orange, finely grated
brandy or rum (opt)
2 -3 tablespoons apricot jam
glace cherries and figs
whole nuts such as Brazils and almonds
Preheat the oven to 350F.
Butter a deep 9 inch (round cake tin and line the base and sides with greaseproof paper.
Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition and adding a heaped tbsp of the flour with the third egg.Fold in the remaining flour, spices, nuts and dried fruits then stir in the orange zest and milk.Spoon into the prepared tin and bake in the centre of the oven for 45-55 minutes.
Test if the cake is cooked by inserting a skewer into the centre.
If the skewer does not come out clean, reduce the heat to 300F, cover the top of the cake with foil and continue to bake a little longer.Remove from the oven and leave the cake to cool in the tin for 30 minutes before turning out onto a rack. Leave until completely cold.
At this stage the cake can be wrapped in foil and stored in an air-tight tin until ready for finishing.
If rum or brandy is to be added make holes in the top of the cake with a skewer and drizzle with a tbsp of the alcohol.This process can be repeated once a week for 8 weeks.
To finish decorating the cake:
Paint the top of the cake with warmed apricot jam. Spread more jam over and decorate with the whole fruit and nuts. Brush the top with more jam to glaze and leave until dry.
Store in an air-tight tin for up to a week.
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon nutmeg
1 tablespoon allspice
2 teaspoons mace
1 teaspoon ground cloves
Mix all ingredients together. Store in airtight glass jar
Pairs Well With
A fantastic and easy to make Christmas cake, ideal for those who are not keen on icing.
To get a completely flat top for decorating, leave the cake to cool upside down then decorate the bottom as opposed to the top