This year I was determined to bake a Traditional Christmas Cake, laden as it is with dry fruits and fed with alcohol. I was fascinated by the cake in itself and the entire process for making it. And boy, did I enjoy myself in the process. I had so many doubts and misgivings through the process but I stuck to the traditional recipe and the end result was absolutely worth it!
The recipe I adapted was the Step by Step Classic British Christmas Cake at About.com.
This recipe yields one 9″ round Christmas Cake that is laden with dry fruits and is redolent with rum and spice.
I am so enthused by how well this cake has turned out that I am thinking of making a Christmas Cake Without Alcohol and trying out other traditional Christmas recipes. 🙂
Last year, I has posted the recipe for Riskrem, a traditional creamy rice pudding that is made in Norway for Christmas.
Yesterday, on Facebook, I posted a pic of the Christmas Cake as soon as I had taken it out of the oven. I got many requests for recipes and so I have posted this recipe today. I have just begun “feeding” the cake and will update this post again.
How to Make the Perfect Traditional Christmas Cake Laden with Alcohol and Dry Fruits
- 100 Gms Glace Cherries
- 100 Gms Sultanas
- 100 Gms Raisins
- 50 Gms Currants
- 150 Gms Dried Apricots
- 150 Gms Dried Figs
- 100 Gms Dried Cranberries
- 300 ml Rum
- 180 gms + 3tbsp APF or Maida
- 100 Gms Ground Almonds
- 225 Gms Butter
- 250 Gms Brown Sugar
- 2 tsp Mixed Spice (I used 3/4 tsp Cinnamon powder, 1/2 tsp Clove Powder, 1/4 tsp Mace, 1/4 nutmeg, 1/4 Soonth or Dried Ginger Powder)
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 4 Eggs
- Zest of 1 Lemon
- Zest of 1 Orange
- Chop the apricots, figs, and cherries to small pieces.
- In a large glass bowl, mix together all the dry fruits.
- Pour the rum over them and mix well.
- Transfer the rum soaked dry fruits into a glass bottle.
- Close the lid and store away from sunlight.
- Let the dry fruits soak in rum for 1 to 10 days. I soaked my dry fruits for 10 days.
- Mix the dry fruits with a dry spoon every day.
- Line the cake tin with 2 layers of parchment paper (also called butter paper).
- Now tie 2 layers of newspaper on the outside such that the edge of the newspaper is about 1.5" above the edge of the cake tin.
- Preheat the oven to 125°C.
- Drain and save all the liquid from the dry fruit. I let it sit in a colander for 2 hours.
- Toss the dry fruit in 3 tbsp APF. Set aside. This helps in preventing the dry fruit from sinking to the bottom of the cake.
- Cream the butter and sugar.
- Incorporate the eggs (one at a time).
- Add the ground almonds, mixed spice, and zests of lemon and orange.
- Mix well.
- Add the APF and baking powder.
- Mix well.
- Fold in the APF-coated soaked dry fruits.
- Ensure that all dry fruits are well-incorporated into the batter.
- Transfer the Christmas Cake batter into the lined cake tin.
- Level the batter.
- Bake at 125°C for about 1 hr 45 mins, or till the skewer comes out clean.
- Let the cake cool.
- Remove from the cake tin.
- Unwrap and discard the parchment paper.
- Poke holes in the cake with a skewer but not through and through.
- Pour about 2 tbsp of the rum that you drained from the dry fruits over the surface of the cake.
- Let the cake absorb the rum.
- Wrap the Traditional Christmas Cake in fresh parchment paper.
- Every 4-5 days, unwarp the cake and feed it. How may days you do this is entirely up to you. I intend to do it twice or thrice.