- 175g butter, chopped
Butter is made when lactic-acid producing bacteria are added to cream and churned to make an…
- 200g dark muscovado sugar
- 750g luxury mixed dried fruit (one that includes mixed peel and glacé cherries)
- finely grated zest and juice of 1 orange
One of the best-known citrus fruits, oranges aren't necessarily orange - some varieties are…
- finely grated zest of 1 lemon
Oval in shape, with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile fruits…
- 100ml/3½ fl oz cherry brandy or brandy plus 4tbsp more
Brandy is a distilled spirit made from virtually any fermented fruit or starchy vegetable.…
- 85g macadamia nut
- 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…
- 85g ground almond
arr-mund or al-mund
Sweet almonds have a subtle fragrance that lends itself well to baking and also works well with…
- 200g plain flour
- ½ tsp baking powder
Baking powder is a raising agent that is commonly used in cake-making. It is made from an alkali…
- 1 tsp ground mixed spice
- 1 tsp ground cinnamon
A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…
- ¼ tsp ground allspice
Put the butter, sugar, fruit, zests, juice and 100ml/3½fl oz brandy in a large pan. Bring slowly to the boil, stirring until the butter has melted. Reduce the heat and bubble for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Remove the pan from the heat and leave to cool for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 150C/gas 2/ fan 130C and line a 20cm round cake tin. Toast the nuts in a dry frying pan, tossing them until evenly browned, or in the oven for 8-10 minutes - keep an eye on them as they burn easily. When they are cool, chop roughly. Stir the eggs, nuts and ground almonds into the fruit mixture and mix well. Sift the flour, baking powder and spices into the pan. Stir in gently, until there are no traces of flour left.
Spoon the mixture into the tin and smooth it down evenly - you will find this is easiest with the back of a metal spoon which has been dipped into boiling water.
Bake for 45 minutes, then turn down the heat to 140C/gas 1/ fan120C and cook for a further 1-1¼ hours (about a further 1¾ hours if you have a gas oven) until the cake is dark golden in appearance and firm to the touch. Cover the top of the cake with foil if it starts to darken too much. To check the cake is done, insert a fine skewer into the centre - if it comes out clean, the cake is cooked.
Make holes all over the warm cake with a fine skewer and spoon the extra 4tbsp brandy over the holes until it has all soaked in. Leave the cake to cool in the tin. When it's cold, remove it from the tin, peel off the lining paper, then wrap first in baking parchment and then in foil. The cake will keep in a cupboard for up to three months or you can freeze it for six months.