If like me you’ve left all your Christmas preparations to the last minute there’s still no need to rush out a buy a shop bought Christmas cake. Lets face it half the time they are stale, overly sweet from the vast quantity of sugar put in them as a preservative and always disappointing compared with home made.
My simple easy to make classic Christmas cake recipe will not let you down or leave your family feeling disappointed with their lot this year. Dense , aromatic and as fruity as you could hope for. So much better than the factory version. Save time by covering with ready made marzipan and icing at your own convenience.
500g mixed dried fruit
350g glace cherries, halved
A splash of whisky
2 clementines, zest only
1 lemon zest only
250g butter, softened
250g light muscovado sugar
250g plain flour
1.5 tsp mixed spice
4 free range eggs
1 tbsp maple syrup
70g flaked almonds
For the covering:
3tsp apricot jam, warm and sieved
675g icing sugar sifted
3tsp lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp glycerine
- Place all the dried fruit, including the cherries in a large mixing bowl, pour over the alcohol and stir in the lemon and orange zest. Cover with clingfilm and leave to soak for three days.
- Grease and line a 9 inch/23cm deep, round tin with a double layer of greased greaseproof paper. Preheat the oven to 140/275F/Gas 1.
- Place the butter, sugar, eggs, maple syrup and almonds into a very large mixing bowl and beat well. Add the flour and mixed spice and stir through until blended. Stir in soaked fruit.
- Spoon the mixture into prepared cake tin and level the surface with a spatulas, or until the cake .
- Bake in the centre of the oven for about 4 hours until the cake is a rich golden brown in colour and firm to touch. Check after two hours and if the cake is already a perfect colour then cover will foil. When a slower inserted into the cake comes out clean then remove from oven and leave to cool in the tin.
- When cool, wrap the cake in greaseproof paper and store in a cake tin or other cool place for up to three months feeding at intervals.
- The week before you want to serve begin covering the cake.
MerryChristmas and a Happy New Year to all who follow Surrey Kitchen.
Love Emma and Ross xxxx