Well, a strange time of year perhaps to make a fruit cake but I had a bag of brandy-soaked from fruit from Lidl leftover from Christmas that was going to go out of date so I thought I better get baking!
This was my very first attempt at a fruit cake and I still have no idea how it tastes! I’m in the process of feeding it weekly with plenty of delicious Brandy… 5 weeks to go and I’ll be able to get some decorating done and who knows we may even be able to eat it in celebration of coming out of lockdown!
I based my fruit cake on a Mary Berry recipe but had to change it a little based on my lockdown ingredient availability! It smelt amazing so I’m feeling pretty positive that it will be delicious!
So here is the recipe I used if you’d like to give it a go…
800g brandy-soaked fruits
275g plain flour
1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger / mixed spice
400g margarine / soft butter
400g soft dark brown sugar
65g ground almonds
1 tbsp black treacle
1 lemon, zest only
1 orange, zest only
1. Preheat the oven to 140 degrees C.
2. Prepare a tall 8″ or 9″ round cake tin with baking paper in the bottom and around the sides. Use a little margarine to help the paper stay in place.
3. Add all the ingredients to the bowl, except for the fruit and mix. An electric mixer is best but you can also beat by hand with a wooden spoon.
4. Once all mixed together, fold in the soaked fruits.
5. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin & cover the top loosely with a double layer of baking paper.
6. Bake in the oven for 4 – 4 1/2 hours, until the cake is firm and a skewer comes out clean.
7. Allow the cake to cool in the tin.
8. When the cake is almost cold, remove from the tin and take off the baking paper. Pierce the base in several places and feed with a tablespoon of brandy.
9. Wrap the cake up in 2 layers of baking paper and a layer of foil and store in a box/tin. Feed the cake with approx 1 tbsp brandy each week for at least 4-6 weeks (thank you cousin Sandra for the advice!).
After 6 weeks I’ll be popping on some marzipan and icing and cannot wait to dig in!
Happy baking one and all, I hope you’re staying safe and well.