Family Christmas Cake
This has been passed down our family and it only comes in pounds and ounces, so I have done my best to convert for you! This is a proper, old fashioned recipe to pass down your family with your own touches added.
1.5kg mixed dried fruit (Auntie.W. only used sultanas & currants but you can add some cherries, mixed peel
zest & juice of an unwaxed lemon
2 tbsp of Rum (or a 1/4 gill!)
250g butter at room temperature
325g soft brown sugar
425g plain flour
1tsp baking powder
100g ground almonds
4 large eggs
1/2tsp mixed spice
1/4 tsp ground mace
1/4 tsp grated nutmeg
Line an 8″ square or 9″ round tin with double thickness greaseproof paper that comes about an inch proud of the top of the tin. Pre heat the oven to 150c/300f/gas mk 2. Weigh out the dried fruit and soak in the rum for up to 24 hours with the lemon zest & juice.Cream the butter and sugar together until pale and fluffy in a large bowl. Add the beaten egg at intervals so that the mixture is light and fluffy, (to avoid curdling, which effects the rising, always use eggs at room temperature). Seive the flour, baking powder and spices into the mixture and stir in slowly with a large metal spoon. Then incorporate the ground almonds. Finally add the fruit and rum mixtufe and fold in carefully but surely until evenly mixed.
Add the cake batter to the tin and flatten on the top and bake on a middle shelf for 3 hours. Test with a skewer at this point. if it is not clean, try the cake for another 20 minutes or so. Once cooked, allow to cool in the tin until cold. You can either leave it in the tin and feed it every day with a little rum or take out of the tin and wrap securely in greaseproof paper until you want to decorate.