500g (1lb 2oz) luxury mixed dried fruit
50g (2oz) glacé cherries, chopped
50g (2oz) Dr. Oetker Crystallised Ginger
7 tbsp brandy
175g (6oz) butter or margarine, softened
175g (6oz) dark brown sugar
3 medium size eggs, beaten
1 tbsp treacle
225g (8oz) plain flour
1 tsp Dr. Oetker Baking Powder
pinch of salt
1 tsp ground mixed spice
50g (2oz) ground almonds
½ tsp Dr. Oetker Natural Vanilla Extract
½ tsp Dr. Oetker Natural Almond Extract
grated rind and juice ½ orange
grated rind and juice ½ lemon
Dr. Oetker Ready Rolled Marzipan
Dr. Oetker Ready Rolled Icing
Dr. Oetker Christmas Cake Decorations Set
1. In a bowl, mix the dried fruit, cherries, Crystallised Ginger and 4 tbsp brandy. Cover and stand overnight, stirring occasionally.
2. The next day, preheat oven to 150ºC/300ºF/Gas Mark 2, and place a roasting tin of hot water into the bottom of the oven. Grease a deep 20cm (8 inch) round cake tin. Line base with 3 layers of greaseproof paper, and the sides with 2 layers. On the outside of the tin, secure 2 layers of brown paper 2.5cm (1 inch) higher than the tin itself, and tie with string.
3. In a mixing bowl, beat together the butter and sugar until pale and creamy. Gradually beat in the eggs, treacle and half the flour. Sieve in remaining flour, Baking Powder, salt and spice, and fold in with the ground almonds.
4. Stir in the dried fruit mixture, Natural Extracts, citrus rind and juices. Pile into tin and smooth the top. Bake in the oven for about 3 hours, until a skewer inserted in the centre of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin.
5. Remove the cake and skewer all over; spoon over remaining brandy. Wrap in greaseproof paper and foil then store in a cool, dark place for 1 month to 1 year, adding 1 tbsp brandy every 3 weeks as above.
To decorate the cake:
1. Brush the top and sides of the cake with jam/shredless marmalade and, using the inner tube to support the Marzipan, lift the Marzipan disc over and onto the cake.
2. Smooth Marzipan over the centre and pulling out any folds, down the sides trimming any excess with a knife - make sure the surface is smooth ready for the Icing.
3. Moisten the surface of the Marzipan with boiled water. Using the inner tube to support the Icing, lift the Icing disc over and onto the cake. Smooth the icing down over the sides and remove any excess.
4. Finish with the Christmas Cake Decoration Set centre piece and frill.
Cooks Tip: To get a really rich flavour the traditional way, make your Christmas Cake 3 months in advance and ‘feed’ it with Brandy every 3 weeks leading up to Christmas Day.