Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Making a UK Christmas Cake

My friend taught me how to make an English Christmas cake.  You need to start making it now in order for it to be ready for Christmas.  This cake is a type of fruit cake and the longer it sets the better it tastes.  I buy one every year but this year I was able to learn how to make one of my own.  Which will come in handy when I return to the states next year.

This recipe is for a 8 inch round cake pan but it needs to be a bit deeper than the standard US one.  Place parchment paper in the bottom and around the sides.  Do not use wax paper as it burns

Add a bit of oil to the paper on the bottom and around the sides

Parchment paper is slightly raised from the pan

You will need 1 pound currants, 7 oz raisins, 7 oz sultanas and 5 oz either candied cherries or dried cranberries.

Add 3 teaspoons of mixed peel (cut up smallish)

Add 3 oz Almond flakes

add lemon rind, just a little
Add in 3 large tablespoon of Brandy.

Give the mixture a good stir and cover with plastic wrap for about an hour to allow the brandy to soak into the fruits

add1/2 teaspoon of mix spice (can use pumpkin spice) and cinnamon

In a separate bowl add 10 oz sugar
Add 2 and 1/2 sticks of margarine sliced up

mix with beaters until creamy

Beat up 5 eggs

Add only a little at a time of the eggs to the sugar and butter mixture and beat until smooth (key is slow to add eggs and only a little at a time)
What it looks like after adding in the eggs:)

Next sift12 oz of flour ( I don't have a sifter so my friend showed me a little trick of whisking the flour)  Add flour to sugar/butter/egg mixture and fold it in

Add mixture to the fruit bowl

Mix it all up, use a very sturdy spoon

add mixture to cake pan -- hard to see here but add a medium size hole in the middle of the fruit cake otherwise it will raise to a point in the middle while baking

Wrap around the cake tin double layer of brown paper and secure with twine.  I am told this helps to keep moisture in and prevent the sides from burning.  Bake very slowly for 1 1/2 hours at 250 degrees F 
Add  parchment paper to cover after 1 1/12 hour of baking and continue to cook for another 1 1/2 hours or until when poke with knife it comes out clean
Out of the oven

Once the cake has cooled down wrap in parchment paper and foil and place in air tight container
I will need to feed the cake at least twice before Christmas with more Brandy.  I will use skewers to poke holes into the cake and add a little Brandy to the cake.  I will do this in 2 weeks and then again in 2 weeks.  Then, I am going to learn how to ice the cake in Marzipan frosting (I have never used this before) and it will be ready in time for Christmas.


  1. That looks very cool...and complicated all at the same time. yummy though!!!

  2. My sister-in-law is from England, and it is so interesting to see the traditions she has brought to our family! She loves fruit cake - whereas I always thought it was something no one wanted to eat ever!

    1. that is how I felt until I tried the UK fruit cake:)

  3. I'm with Heather...I didn't think people actually liked fruit cake but maybe it's because here in the states what we have as fruitcake isn't exactly real fruit cake? This looks yummy!

    1. English fruit cake is so much better than the US version. I love this version!

  4. My Nana's recipe is very similar. It is from Kent. I've only made it twice but worth all the effort. I found a store that sells something similar and I buy it by the case. My kids love to have a slice, covered in homemade custard, icing and marzipan and all, all year round! Thanks for linking up with us at No Ordinary Blog Hop. Every blessing, Kelly