Imelda’s traditional Christmas Cake

Imelda's Christmas Cake
This week we are making our Traditional Christmas Cake and it is a wonderfully moist cake when cooked.

This week we are making our Traditional Christmas Cake and it is a wonderfully moist cake when cooked.

Christmas Cake is usually made from a recipe that is passed down through generations and we all have wonderful memories of Christmas baking that has become a great tradition.

Sometimes customers tell me about all the hard work they put into baking Christmas cakes, only for it to be left uneaten in January, it is really important that you follow the recipe and for all your hard work you will have a delicious light fruit cake that won’t last past Christmas.

At Tynan’s we bake batches of Christmas Cakes each year, but I always make a Christmas Cake at home with my own family, this is a tradition and they play a huge part in the weighing out, mixing, cooking, icing and finally eating of the cake, the smell of the cake baking in the oven and checking it through the glass door brings great excitement.

The key to a good cake is good quality ingredients and to be organised, have your tin lined and everything prepared, all the fruit soaked from the day before and next day make and bake your cake.

For this recipe I use a 9” square which cuts really well or an 8” round tin, using good parchment paper line your tin inside with a double sheet on the base and around the sides of the tin with 3 to 4 folds of paper.

Then line the outside of the tin with brown paper and tie with some string, after the cake has been in the oven 2 hours, quickly open the door and slip a sheet of parchment paper over the top to protect the cake, this will give you a golden colour and protect the cake while baking. This recipe can be doubled or trebled and you will still get the same result.

Traditional Christmas Cake

8oz/225g Butter

8oz/225g Brown Sugar,

8oz/225g Plain Flour, sieved

4 Eggs, size 2 beaten

8oz/225g Currants

8oz/225g Sultanas

8oz/225g Raisins

4oz/112g Mixed Peel

4oz/112g Cherries

2oz/56g Ground Almonds

1tsp Mixed Spice,

½tsp Ground Ginger

1tsp Nutmeg

½tsp, Ground Cloves,

½tsp Ground Cinnamon,

Rind of 1 Lemon & Orange

3tbsp Whiskey or Brandy

1tbsp Black Treacle, optional

Mix all the fruit, ground almonds and spice together on the day before you are ready to bake your cake.

Cream the butter & sugar and whisk in the eggs, then fold in the flour. If you are using treacle you can add it at this stage.

Stir in the fruit mix.

Turn into a prepared tin and bake at 150ºC -160ºC, (140º Fan Oven) for 3 to 3¼ hours.

When the cake comes out of the oven allow to cool and before you take it out of the tin give the cake a drink of brandy or whiskey (whichever you have in the larder).

Wrap the cake in parchment paper first, then tin foil and finally place into an air tight container, this will keep the cake fresh and moist and each week give it a little drink of whiskey or brandy.

In the coming weeks we will glaze out cake, make fresh almond paste and ice the cake.