Friday, December 19, 2014

Fruit and Nut Christmas Cake
















Ingredients: 


  1. Rum – ½ cup
  2. Orange juice - Juice from 2 Oranges to soak the fruits in (only if required to moisten the fruit mixture)
  3.  Mixed dryfruits and nuts – 3/4th kg (50% of the total was cashews and raisins (black and golden mix), rest was dates,hazel nuts, Almonds ,tuti fruti, cranberries,glacecherries & apricots)
  4.  Maida - 250gms.
  5.  Baking powder - 1/2tsp
  6.  Baking soda  - 1/4tsp
  7.  Cinnamon power - 1/4tsp
  8.  Clove power - 1/4tsp
  9.  Nutmeg power - 1/4tsp
  10. Unsalted butter - 100gms
  11. Ghee /clarified  butter- 125gm
  12. Powdered Sugar - 300gms
  13. Eggs -4 separate the yolks and whites
  14. Vanilla essence - 1tsp.
  15. Sugar – 8 tbsp divided ( 4 tbsp to caramalize and 4 tbsp to beat with egg white)
  16. Salt – ½ tsp
  17. Milk - 1/4cup
  18. Limejuice - 3tblsp
  19. Hot water – 1 cup


Method:

















  

To Prepare the fruit and nut mix -  Chop all dry fruits and cashew nuts finely and soak them in Rum/Brandy in a clean dry bottle for minimum 2 weeks. Shake or stir the mixture once a day . You can do the soaking process an year in advance .If you feel the mixture is not moist enough add orange juice to moisten it. 













  
























On the day of baking the cake,  You need to steam the fruit mixture - transfer these fruits in to a heatproof container with lid and steam  in a pressure cooker or steamer for 10 minutes. Remove the lid spread the fruits on a flat dry tray and allow to cool completely.
 

 















 Caramelize the Sugar -  Heat 4tblsp sugar in a pan stirring continuously. When it becomes dark brown add 1cup hot water and stir until it becomes thick.( be careful while doing this, the caramalized syrup is very hot and may bubble over ) . Let this mix cool.

























Preheat the oven to 170C/340F

Preparing the flour mix - Sieve together all purpose flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon powder, clove powder and salt . Toss the steamed cooled mixed fruits in the flour-mix well in a large bowl, so that the fruit is completely coated. Keep aside ,this step will avoid fruits falling to the bottom of the cake when baked.


Making the cake batter - Add butter, ghee,powdered sugar and egg yolks and beat well. Then add vanilla essence and caramel syrup and beat well. Add flour-fruits mix slowly and Stir well with spatula to blend uniformly. Add milk and stir.
Beat egg whites till stiff to this add 4 tbsp sugar and limejuice and beat again. Fold in egg whites in to the cake mixture.

To bake the cake - Line the bottom and sides of cake pans with lightly greased parchment / butter paper. Pour cake batter in to prepared pan. Bake in the centre of the oven for about  1.5 hours or till a wooden toothpick inserted in centers comes out clean. (Start checking after 1hr. Cool the Cake.



















Once the cake is cooled brush or sprinkle a teaspoon or two of Rum / brandy over cake, let it sink in for a few minutes. Every 2 days you can brush some rum/brandy over the cake to keep it moist and improve the flavor . Dont let it get soggy, just moist.
 


















 To store the cake : Wrap it in wax paper and then in a aluminum foil , brush with rum/brandy once a week .

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