I don't know about you, but Christmas cake is one of my weaknesses. Each year we make one together and I thought I would share this amazing recipe with you. This cake is so yummy that last year everyone ate the cake we'd made (well before Christmas I might add) and I ended up making three more of these just so we'd end up with one on Christmas day.
This year my cake is hidden safely away and I'm not telling anyone where it is - I learn from my mistakes : )
To make a 1/2 lb cake you will need
1,255g dried fruit - I use a mix of figs, apricots, cranberries, prunes, sultanas and candied orange peel (chop the bigger fruits up)
180ml grape juice concentrate (I buy this from Wilkinsons - it's in he homebrew section)
2 tsp lemon zest
4 large eggs
2 tablespoons orange marmalade
350g plain flour
1 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
pinch of salt
Put all the fruit in a large bowl and add the grape juice concentrate - cover and leave to soak overnight.
Cream the butter then beat in the lemon zest and marmalade.
Beat in the eggs one at a time.
Sift the dry ingredients together then mix a spoonful of the fruit and a spoonful of the flour mix into the creamed mixture alternatively.
Double line a baking tin and carefully spoon the cake mix in. Once done wrap the outside of the baking tin in a double layer of greaseproof paper.
Bake in a preheated oven at gas 2 (150 centigrade) for 3-3 1/2 hours.
When the cake is cooked, remove from the oven and spoon 2 tbsp of grape concentrate over the top and immediately wrap in foil (this will trap the heat, create steam and make your cake nice and moist.) When its cold remove from the tin and re-wrap in foil, store in an airtight container (ideally for 3 weeks)
I don't add sugar to this recipe as the grape concentrate is a sugar substitute. If you can't get hold of it you can always soak the fruit in some orange juice and use 195g of brown sugar and cream it into the butter.
Enjoy : )