Archive | June, 2013

Quick and easy fruit cake

13 Jun

I lovvvvvve dried fruit, to the extent that Pat has found me once or twice rummaging through the bag of muesli and picking out the raisins. Desperate times my friends. My parents came to stay a few weeks ago, so I thought it was the perfect excuse to whip up something lovely and home made for them. My mum’s an incredible baker, my grandmother owned a bakery, and her mum was apparently one of the best bakers of them all. I suppose baking makes me feel a bit closer to them all somehow. Like it’s in our genes. Well, it’s certainly in my jeans now – I’ve eaten so much cake and ice cream over the last few weeks that I’m slightly concerned that I’m not going to fit into my dress for Ascot next weekend. Hopefully there won’t be more tears as per the boob cake episode. Speaking of boobs, ladies you MUST check out this video – if there was ever an excuse to get checking those beautiful boobies of yours, this video is it! Check it out. Anyway now that I’ve gone off on a tangent, what I meant to say was that fruitcake is one of those traditional cakes that really reminds me of cosy homes and families. Also, Daps doesn’t like it which means there’s more for me. Ha.

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As you’ve probably guessed from the lack of posts exam period is looming…which means increasingly less time to do anything other than sit next to my computer pretending that I’m working, sit on the sofa with a book on my lap hoping that all the information will seep in by osmosis, and then promptly fall asleep. It’s not going well. This cake needed to be whipped up in a flash – no time for all that christmas-cake-soaking-hundreds-of-ingredients-nonsense, the prep was going to be done in under an hour total and then stuck in the oven. My tip is to boil your fruit up the night before and leave it to cool overnight, so you can just bung everything in the oven in the morning the next day. The recipe was taken from a few different recipes as I improved a bit, but this is the closest one I could find from food.com. It’s a wonderfully light, moist cake which is unbelievably satisfying. Yum!

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– 200g brown sugar
– 225ml water
– 375g mixed fruit (plus a bit extra for nibbling)
– 1 tsp bicarb soda
– 275g SR flour
– 1 tsp mixed spice
– 1 egg
– pinch salt

1. Put the water, marg, sugar, bicarb of soda and dried fruit in a pan and bring to the boil; as soon as it’s boiling, take it off the heat and leave it to cool overnight. I may or may not have splashed a fair few glugs of brandy into the mix at this point…ahem.

2. Beat the egg and add to the mixture along with the mixed spice, salt and the flour. Mix well with a spoon.

3. Preheat the oven to 170 (fan) and grease and line a cake tin. Put the mixture into the cake tin and bake for around an hour and a half – check at around 1hr15 to see how it’s getting on as ovens vary. I covered mine with a damp tea towel about half way through cooking just to make sure it wasn’t drying out around the edges, but to be honest I’m not sure it needed it!

4. Leave to cool and enjoy a generous slice with a nice cup of tea and some friends and family.

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