Snow-topped holly cakes

Snow-topped holly cakes

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(13 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 45 mins Cook: 1 hr, 45 mins

Skill level

Easy

Servings

Makes 2 cakes, each serves 8

This square Christmas cake is cut into two loaf-shaped cakes, so you can give one to a friend

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Undecorated cake can be frozen
Nutrition info

Nutrition

kcalories
584
protein
6g
carbs
97g
fat
20g
saturates
7g
fibre
2g
sugar
87g
salt
0.32g

Ingredients

  • 8 glacé cherries
  • small holly sprigs, washed and dried
  • 200g dark muscovado sugar
  • 175g butter, chopped
  • 700g luxury mixed dried fruits
  • 50g glacé cherries
  • 2 tsp grated fresh root ginger
  • zest and juice 1 orange
  • 100ml dark rum, brandy or orange juice
  • 85g pecans
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 85g ground almonds
  • 200g plain flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 250g pack marzipan, halved
  • icing sugar, for dusting
  • 2 tbsp warmed apricot jam
  • 500g pack fondant icing sugar

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Method

  1. Tip the sugar, butter, dried fruit, whole cherries, ginger, orange zest and juice into a large pan. Pour over the rum, brandy or juice, then put on the heat and slowly bring to the boil, stirring frequently to melt the butter. Reduce the heat and bubble gently, uncovered for 10 mins, stirring every now and again to make sure the mixture doesn’t catch on the bottom of the pan. Set aside for 30 mins to cool.
  2. Stir the nuts, eggs and ground almonds into the fruit, then sift in the flour, baking powder and spices. Stir everything together gently but thoroughly. Your batter is ready.
  3. Heat oven to 150C/130C fan/gas 2. Butter and line the base and sides of a 18cm square tin with baking paper. Spoon the cake mix into the tin and level the top with a spoon dipped into boiling water. Bake for 45 mins, then turn oven down to 140C/120C fan/gas 1 and cook for 1 hr more or until a skewer inserted comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Will keep well-wrapped in foil for 2 months or freeze for 1 year.
  4. Carefully cut the square cake in half and trim the edges so that you see the texture of the cake on all sides. Roll out each piece of marzipan on a surface dusted with icing sugar until the size of the top of each cake.
  5. Generously brush the top of the cakes with jam, place jam-side down on top of the marzipan, then trim away the excess marzipan with a sharp knife.
  6. Make up the fondant icing to a spreading consistency, then spread on top of the cakes so that it slightly runs over the edges. Top with cherries and holly, then leave to set. Will keep in a plastic container in a cool place for 4-7 days.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, December 2009

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Comments

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sandrahayes's picture
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I have made this recipe for several years. Rather than making a square cake, I divide the mixture between 2 loaf tins and cook them at the same time. It makes a delicious cake and is so, so easy.

samilou1989's picture

This has just come out of the oven, gave it an extra 25 min cooking time as it was still wet in the middle. Its currently cooling, looking forward to the finished result!

ail4978's picture

Excellent recipe you just can't go wrong with it..I left out pecan nuts but put in 100g of ground almonds as I don't like the crunch of nuts in my fruit cake I also added 100ml brandy. So good had to make two..

sues0606's picture

I have just made this cake for Christmas for ourselves and sister in law. Both cakes are already half gone, not sure they are going to make it to Christmas!!! Really nice, not too heavy and better to have slices rather than big wedges. Recommend it :-)

clare_thomp's picture

Does anyone know if you cook 2 of these at one time do you need to increase the cooking time?

nikitagiles's picture

Sorry am I the only one that doesn't know what to do to make up fondant to spreading consistency? Can someone please tell me how to do this? Thanks

madc39od's picture

If baked in 2 loaf tins, how long should the cooking time be please?

lulubell79's picture

Anyone know how far in advance you can make it and how do you store it as im making some xmas hampers for the school raffle and would like to make some mini versions of this cake. Thanks x

lera1991's picture
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Never made a christmas cake before and this one came out perfect!

weemom's picture

Love this cake. My tin was 9" so I doubled the ingredients and cooking time at 120 deg C fan and got a lovely result.

Sakura Sunshine's picture
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I made this as a christmas present for relatives and they loved it! Takes some time but absolutely worth it and easy! highly recommended.

Sakura Sunshine's picture
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Also I used 2 loaf tins and it came out perfect.

karen230674's picture
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I've made this cake in a round tin before about 20cm diameter. Also I slipped up and put in too much fruit but increased on the other ingredients to compensate and it was still delicious.

mcjules's picture
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I write this as i savour the last slice, it was by far the tastiest christmas cake i have ever made so i will stick to this recipe from now on.

tc1980's picture
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The cake recipe for this is lovely. I substituted the pecans for walnuts, which i chopped roughly (just because that's what I had in). I cooked it in 2 loaf tins and it turned out suberbly! Very proud of the result and the walnuts gave it lovely crunch every so often, without making it too crunchy. Will definately be keeping this recipe

janeymcnulty's picture

Can anyone tell me if I can cook this in a round tin? if so what diameter?

kiwiislander's picture

Followed the instructions to the letter, in fact I cooked it longer - and it was uncooked/ soggy in the middle - total waste of ingredients. Gutted. Off to buy one from Tesco's !!!

muckymatt96's picture
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Looks as good as it tastes!
Now a family favourite and I think you should make your own cook book too!

broadhaven's picture
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This is a 5+ cake!!! I made it several weeks ago and I have just had a slice ( couldn't wait for the big day! )
It is gorgeous, the best I have tasted.
After a disaster of making another fruit cake I was beginning to think I just couldn't make fruit cakes, but you just can't go wrong with this recipe. Perfect Perfect...

wendywd's picture
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Fantastic recipe. Made the recipe into individual christmas cakes (cooked for 35 mins each in oven) and then iced the individual cakes. Absolutely delicious and will be making again.

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