Stir it up Sunday Christmas Cake Recipes
This post is based around a brilliantly easy and reliable basic Christmas cake recipe I have been using for the past few years, it is so good in its own right, but this year I am stirring it up a bit 😊with two slightly differing versions, I am making two quantities of the recipe to make one cake to eat now with added pear and cranberry with a white rum, apple juice soak, and one to keep for xmas with added cherries and apricots with a brandy apple juice soak, which I will marzipan, ice and decorate traditionally nearer the day.
You can find the original recipe on the post link below, which will give you a lovely moist cake without changing anything at all. Every year though I have to bake a second cake to put away for Christmas as the first disappears as soon as it is cool enough to eat.
The main difference to the original recipe with how I am doing it this year is that I am including the juice of the lemon along with the grated zest, increasing the quantity of the special dried fruit a smidgen and I am adding 2 not 1 tablespoons each of apple juice and alcohol to the dried fruits and letting it all sit overnight first, before warming the fruit mix through in the oven. (So do this stage before beginning the recipe).
Ingredients: makes 1 cake
1.25 Kg weight. Suitable for an 18 cm round or 15 cm square baking tin. Bake Time 1& 1/2 – 2 Hours.
150 g currants.
150 g sultanas.
150 g raisins.
100 g dried pears or apricots.
100 g cranberries or cherries.
1/2 lemon juice & zest
2 tablespoons white rum or brandy. (sub with juice if making non alcohol)
2 tablespoons apple juice. (or orange juice)
125 g plain flour.
Salt small pinch.
1/2 teaspoon ground mixed spice.
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg freshly grated.
Good pinch ground ginger.
100 g soft brown sugar.
125 g unsalted butter softened.
3 free range eggs lightly beaten.
1/2 tablespoon black treacle or golden syrup. (I use a mix of both).
50 g chopped walnuts.( substitute cashews if wanted).
100 g cooking apple, peeled, cored and finely grated.
1.Lightly grease the base and sides of the baking tin. Line with parchment paper, this prevents the edge of the cake from drying out. Tie a double band of brown paper 3 cm deeper than the tin around the outside of the tin.
2. Put the first eight ingredients into a large oven proof dish, mix well and cover with a lid. Place in a cool oven 130 C Gas Mark 1/2 for 30 minutes. This allows the the fruit to become warm and sticky. Remove from oven, remove the lid and set aside to cool.
3. Preheat oven to 145 C Gas Mark 1-2. Sift the flour, salt, mixed spice, nutmeg and ginger into a large mixing bowl, add the brown sugar and combine well together. Add the softened butter and three quarters of the beaten egg and the black treacle or golden syrup.
Use a hand held or free standing electric mixer and beat for 1 1/2 minutes until the mixture is light and creamy. Add the remaining egg and beat another 30 seconds.
4. Make sure the heated fruit has cooled before you add to the flour mix or you risk curdling the eggs. Add the dried fruit, walnuts and grated apple. Using a large metal spoon fold everything together until thoroughly mixed.
5. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin, smoothing it out lightly with the back of a spoon, making a slight hallow in the center of the cake. This will prevent it from from rising in the center. Place a piece of foil with a hole about 4 cm wide cut in the middle over the cake tin.
6. Bake in the oven for half the allotted time, (approximately 45 mins-1 hr), remove the foil and continue to bake until the cake is golden in colour and a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
7. Allow to cool completely before turning out.
This cake is good freshly baked or will mature nicely wrapped in grease proof paper in an airtight container in a cool place and will keep for three months. You can feed the cake with a spoonful of alcohol each week or fruit juice if making non alcoholic. Note-If you make the non alcohol version of this cake it will only keep a couple of months as alcohol preserves whilst fruit juice deteriorate over time.