Christmas gave me the chance to bake fruit cake several times. Here’s a recipe that produces the most perfect boozy fruit cake (from my perspective). It is rich, moist, dense, boozy and packed with fruit. The pecan’s rich and buttery flavour added that extra lusciousness.
I have also updated my recipe to fit a 23 cm cake tin – the previous portion was not enough as the fruit cake just tastes so good.
INGREDIENTS (makes a 23 cm round cake)
- 3 cups mixed fruit (500 gm) **
- 1 cup glazed cherries (halved) **
- 1 cup Bacardi rum (or liqueur)
- 240 gm butter (softened)
- 1 cup brown sugar (200 gm) **
- 3 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 2 tablespoons orange zest
- ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon allspice powder
- 240 gm plain flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 120 gm ground almond
** For a less sweet version of this fruit cake, total fruit may be reduced to 300 gm and sugar to 100 gm.
1. Put all the dry fruit in a mixing bowl and add rum. Cover with plastic wrap and leave it in the fridge overnight.
2. Preheat the oven to 160C (fan-forced). Line a cake tin (23 cm diameter) with double layers of greaseproof baking paper.
3. Drain the mixed fruit and reserve the rum for later use. Toss the fruit with 2 tablespoons of flour.
4. In a mixing bowl, add softened butter and brown sugar and beat till light and fluffy. Add eggs (a couple of spoonfuls at a time) and continue beating. Add vanilla essence, orange zest, cinnamon and all-spice powder. Next, add the rest of the flour, baking powder and ground almond and mix to combine.
4. Finally, add the fruit mixture to the batter and mix to combine. Pour the batter into the prepared cake tin and tap the tin on the bench top to settle the mixture. Using a spatula, smooth the surface with a dipped centre. This will enable the cake to rise to a flat top.
5. Decorate the top with pecans.
6. Bake on the middle shelf in the oven at 160°C for 1 1/4 hour. After the first 30 minutes, cover the tin with foil to prevent burning the top and continue to bake for another 30 minutes. Use a skewer to test if the cake is cooked. It’s cooked when skewer comes out clean. When cooked, remove the foil and bake for another 15 minutes to brown the top.
7. In the meanwhile, simmer the reserved rum and reduce to about 3 tablespoons of rum. Once the cake is cooked, remove from oven but leave the cake in the tin. Poke holes in the cake with a skewer and spread the rum over the warm cake. Let the cake cool completely in the tin.