Thursday, December 23, 2010

Boozy Fruit Cake

You know Christmas is here when
  1. The radio plays 'All I want for Christmas' & 'Last Christmas' endlessly
  2. Starbucks bring back their famous Christmas Lattes and Christmas blend coffee
  3. Markets, old and new, sell Christmas goodies.
  4. Shimmering lights light up the once dark gloomy streets.
  5. Deli's start stocking the shelves with fruitcakes, mince pies & puddings.
  6. Roads are slippery and you don't find salt for either cooking or gritting!
But for me its this time of the year when I go through a baking frenzy...With all the snow and bad weather outside there is something cosy about just staying home and baking.
I made fruit cake, mince pies, mince meat and xmas pudding this year, in spite of being down with flu bug. 
I make this fruit cake every year, experimenting with new flavours, & this time I made this cake using Pedro Ximénez an intensely sweet, dark dessert sherry that works perfectly for this cake. It gave the cake a gorgeous brown colour and fruity richness. I brushed the cooled cake with brandy to make it more boozy and christmassy, perfect to serve with a warm glass of Mulled Wine.
Boozy Fruit Cake (adapted minimally from Delicious)
Raisins - 250gms
Sultanas - 175 gms
Mixed Peel - 100gms
Glacé Cherries - 50 gms
Pedro Ximénez - 150ml (you could use all Brandy)
Grated Zest of 1 Orange and Lemon
Unsalted Butter - 200gms
Mixed Spice Sugar - 60gms (you could use all light brown sugar)
Light Brown Sugar - 80 gms
Dark Brown Sugar - 40gms
Eggs - 4
Sponge Flour - 275 gms
Baking Powder - 1/2 tsp
Ground Cinnamon - 1tsp
Mixed Spice - 1 tsp
Blanched Almonds - 100 gms
Mix the raisins,sultanas & currants in a bowl. Pour over warm water to cover & leave aside for 2 hrs. Drain the fruits through a colander and leave to dry overnight on a muslin cloth. Grease & Line an 8" loose bottom pan with grease proof paper. I used 2 sheets on the base & sides. Mix the fruits with the zest & Pedro Ximénez in a pan. Bring this to a boil and leave to cool. Preheat oven to 160C. Sift the flour,baking powder & the spices. Beat the butter & sugar till light. Add eggs one at a time beating well after each addition. Add the flour mixture and the cooled fruits, almonds to this and gently fold everything till combined. If the mixture looks very thick add a splash of milk. Spoon the batter into the prepared tin and bake for 1-1.15 min or until skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.Leave to cool for a few minutes and transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. When cool brush the top and sides of the cake with brandy.


Pavithra Elangovan said...

Truly tempting and moist fruit awesome.

Jamie said...

I can't believe you bake all this and with the flu! Beautiful fruitcake! Happy Happy Holidays to you and yours and be healthy! And in 2011 we meet! xoxo

Gayathri Kumar said...

Lovely cake..

Jeanne said...

Awww, it's not Christmas till they play Last Christmas ;-) You forgot Feed the World off the list though, hahaha! The cake looks fab and I hope you had a lovely festive season. All the best for 2011!

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