Traditional Christmas Cake

Ingredients

  • CAKE
  • 150g raisins
  • 150g sultanas
  • 100g currants
  • 100g glace cherries
  • 100g mixed peel
  • 100g flaked almonds
  • 1 lemon, rind and juice
  • 150g Doves Farm Plain White Flour
  • 125g butter
  • 125g soft brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 tbsp brandy or apple juice
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • ICING AND DECORATION
  • 3 tbsp apricot jam
  • 200g marzipan
  • 500g fondant icing
  • edible gold leaf sheet (optional)
  • gold ribbon (optional)

Method

Cake

  1. Weigh the raisins, sultanas, currants, cherries, peel and almonds into a bowl. Add the flour, stir to mix and set aside.
  2. Line a 20cm/8" deep, round cake tin with parchment and preheat the oven.
  3. Put the butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and beat together until light and fluffy.
  4. Beat in the eggs one at a time, ensuring each is well incorporated before adding the next.
  5. Add the brandy, mixed spice, the lemon rind and the juice to the bowl and beat again.
  6. Stir in the prepared fruit.
  7. Tip the mixture into the prepared tin, pushing it down and smoothing the top.
  8. Bake for 2 - 2¼ hours.
  9. Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 12 hours.

Icing and Decoration

  1. Warm the apricot jam and spread it over the cold cake.
  2. Roll the marzipan into a large circle. Carefully lift it onto the cake, pressing and shaping it with a cake smoother to cover the cake. Trim away any excess.
  3. Leave the cake for at least 12 hours for the marzipan to set, alternatively wrap and store it until a few days before you plan to serve it.
  4. Roll the fondant icing into a large circle. Carefully lift it over the marzipan, pressing and shaping it with a cake smoother to cover the cake. Trim away any excess.
  5. To store the cake, wrap it in parchment and a double layer of tin foil before storing it in an airtight container where it will keep for several weeks.
  6. Decorate the cake with small pieces of edible gold leaf and a ribbon, or other decoration of your choice.