Every year, December 25 is a day of carnival for everyone in the world. The streets and malls showcase sparkling lighting with alluring decorations. As such, it becomes hard to take your eyes off from this awesome welcome of Christmas fiesta. Food courts are stuffed with lip-smacking Christmas desserts with a marvelous traditional-modern blend. But nothing can beat the taste and emotions attached to the traditional ones. English Christmas cake is one of the yummy traditional sweets of the feast. It is prepared using some rich ingredients like moist currants, sultanas, raisins, and rum. The dessert is enjoyed by several families for over 100 years. These traditional cakes are made well in advance before Christmas Eve and kept in air-tight tins. Weekly a little amount of brandy, whisky or sherry is poured in the holes of the cakes until the advent of 25 December which enhances the taste and flavor. Check out the recipe of this very old, luscious English Christmas cake in the following lines.
English Christmas cake is a yummy traditional dessert you will surely love to pound on. Check out the recipe of this gorgeous sweet in this article.
English Christmas Cake
- 225 g Currants
- 225 g Sultanas
- 225 g Dark Raisins
- 225 g softened Butter
- 225 g Brown Sugar (light or dark)
- 225 g Pastry Flour (sifted)
- 100 g Candied Cherries (chopped)
- ½ glass Brandy and Port Blend>
- 4 large Eggs (separated)
- 1 tsp Vanilla
- 1 tsp Almond Extract
- 1 tsp Baking Powder
- 1 tsp Allspice
- 550 g Almond Paste
- 225 g Apricot Jam
- 2-3 tbsp Water
For Royal Icing
- 675 g sifted Icing Sugar
- 3 Egg Whites
- 1 tbsp Lemon Juice
- 1 tsp Glycerin
- Combine together currants, sultanas, dark raisins, cherries, brandy and port, vanilla, and almond extract in a large mixing bowl. Set aside and let the fruit soak for about 12 hours.
- Pre-heat oven at 300 degree F.
- Take a 20 cm round cake pan and line it with parchment paper.
- In another bowl, mix butter and brown sugar together.
- Beat the egg yolks and add to the dried fruit mixture. Mix well.
- Add the butter mixture and blend thoroughly.
- Sift flour, baking powder, and allspice in a fresh bowl.
- Add this mixture to the previous batter and whisk well.
- Beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form. Fold them in the batter.
- Pour this mixture into the prepared pan and bake for about 2-2½ hours. Check by inserting a toothpick gently into the center of the cake, if it comes out clean, the cake is cooked.
- Take out the pan from the oven and keep aside for about half an hour.
- Invert it on a rack and allow it to cool.
Cake Icing and Decorating
- In a small saucepan, pour apricot jam and water. Stir and cook until the jam is fully dissolved.
- Remove from heat and strain using a sieve.
- Pour the liquid into the saucepan and bring to a boil. Simmer until the liquid becomes smooth and thick.
- Brush this dissolved jam onto the cake.
- On a clean working platform, spread some sugar. Take 2/3 of almond paste and roll it out into the shape of a rectangle.
- The width of these rectangles must be in equal measurements of the cake.
- Cover the entire sides of the cake with these almond rectangles, pressing the ends gently to seal it.
- Cut the rest of the almond paste into a circle or square which must be of the same size as the top of the cake.
- Place it on the cake and seal the entire cake properly.
- Let it dry for about 5-6 days in a comparatively hot room.
Making The Icing
- Take a container and beat egg whites until foamy.
- Pour half of the icing sugar and mix well. Keep on stirring and gradually add lemon juice, glycerin and remaining sugar. Beat well until soft peaks are formed.
- Cover this container with a cloth and set aside for few hours.
- If you want to make the mixture more thick, then add some more sugar according to your preference.
- Decorate the cake with this prepared icing.
- You can use a sprig of holly or cranberries frosted with egg white and sugar to garnish.