Christmas Cake Recipe

This recipe is posted especially for Ruth Elder, with love and appreciation for all of her support for my blog over the past eight years 😘

I don’t like fruit cake.  There I said it.  I don’t like marzipan either so Christmas cake is not something that I eat.  But I love to make it and for me, nothing says Autumn like the smell of dried fruit and toasted baking paper.

Christmas Cake is best made from September to November as it needs a little time to “mature’ and be ‘fed’ with booze.  But you can do it later if needs be or even earlier as it keeps for a year.

I tweak my recipe every year in an attempt to create a cake that I like.  So far I’ve been unsuccessful but of all the flavour combinations, this one has received the most praise, with even my ex-partner asking to take a slab home!!

How I’ll be decorating this year’s cake is yet to be decided but I have a few fancy ideas in mind so watch this space.  In the meantime, here’s how to make it.

You Will Need

23cm/9in baking tin

350g dates

1kg sultanas

140g glace cherries

250g/9oz butter

250g/9oz soft dark brown sugar

4 free-range eggs

1 tablespoon golden syrup

275g/10oz plain flour

½ tsp mixed spice

½ tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp ground ginger

Method

  • Chop your dates into pieces no bigger than 1cm and place in a large bowl
  • Chop your glace cherries in half and add to the dates
  • Add the raisins and spices
  • Cover the whole lot with half a cup of sherry
  • Place a clean tablecloth over the bowl so that air can circulate but dust and creepy crawlies can’t get in.
  • Allow to soak for around 4 days, stirring each day and adding sherry if the fruit appears to have soaked everything up.

Baking Day

  • Preheat your oven to 140C/120C Fan/Gas 1
  • Add the dry flour and spices to the dried, soaked fruit and mix well to coat.
  • In a separate bowl combine the sugar and margarine and beat until smooth.
  • Add the eggs and syrup and combine well.
  • Slowly add the wet mixture to the fruit, mixing well inbetween each addition.
  • Grease and line your baking tin.
  • Carefully spoon the mixture into the tin and smooth the top.

  • Add a sleeve of baking paper – this stops the top of the cake from burning.  Fold a length of baking paper and wrap around the outside of the tip.  Secure with twine.
  • Bake for 4 hours.
  • Allow to cool completely before placing in an airtight container.
  • Once or twice a week, poke a few small holes in the cake using a skewer and spoon a little sherry on top.  You may like to turn the cake aswell to get an even ‘feed’!
  • Decorate one week before Christmas.

Love Rachel ❤️

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