Christmas Cake

Traditional Christmas Cake

Large Sauce Pan, Pastry Brush, Cake Tin 13cm

Ingredients Makes 12 of 13cm Size Cakes:
1.  1 kg raisins
2.  1 kg currants
3.  1 kg of mixed dried fruits
4.  300 g glace cherries
5.  300 g dried soft figs
6.  1,200 ml armagnac
7.  900 g butter
8.  550 g dark brown sugar
9.  1 lemon zest
10. 1 orange zest
11. 12 eggs
12. 6 tbsp black treacle
13. 3 tsp almond essence
14. 3 tsp vanilla essence

Dry ingredients:
15. 900 g plain flour
16. 500 g ground almonds
17. 1 ½ tsp ground cloves
18. 3 tsp ground cinnamon
19. 1 ½ tsp ground ginger
20. 450 g chopped walnuts

Cake Decoration:
21.  1 ½ kg candied fruits and peeled mix fruit.
22.  1 tbsp apricot jam, 5 tbsp water.

The Cake:

Day 1:
1. Mix all dried fruits and Armagnac on a large sauce pan, bring to boil, remove from heat, cover once cooled with a cling film and leave the mixture to rest in the fridge overnight.

Day 2:
2. Take the marinated fruits in Armagnac out of the fridge and leave for a few minutes at room temperature to make it easier to mix.
3. Mix all the dry ingredients together on a bowl and set aside.
4. Preheat oven at 150°C. Grease all the cake tins with butter.
5. On a mixer- thoroughly mix butter, sugar, add lemon and orange zest, followed by the eggs adding them onto the mixture one at a time.
6. Add the black treacle, vanilla and almond extract whilst continuously mixing. Finally add marinated fruits alternately with the dry ingredients, mix ensuring that all the ingredients are incorporated together.
7. Pour the cake mixture on a grease cake tin. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes.Before taking the cake out of the oven insert a knife or a cake tester at the centre of the cake, if it comes out clean without cream mixture stuck to it, then your cake is baked and ready.
8. Brush the baked cake with Armagnac all over. Wrap in foil and keep on an air tight container for 2-3 weeks for the flavour to infuse.

2 or 3 weeks later:
9. The Apricot Glaze: On a small sauce pan apricot jam and water to a boil. Once it starts to boil remove from heat and leave to cool for a few minutes.
10. Decorate the top of the cake with the candied fruits and peeled fruit mix (as per the picture below). Brush the candied fruits and peeled fruit mix with the apricot glaze (as per the picture below). Leave to cool and set for a few minutes. Wrap in foil and keep on an air tight container. Done.

Christmas CakeChristmas Cake

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