Fig & honey Christmas cake

Fig & honey Christmas cake

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(31 ratings)

Prep: 30 mins Cook: 3 hrs, 30 mins

More effort

Serves 8 - 10

This traditional Christmas cake is the perfect combination of fruit, nuts and spices

Nutrition and extra info

  • Freezable


  • kcal782
  • fat30g
  • saturates14g
  • carbs121g
  • sugars98g
  • fibre5g
  • protein10g
  • salt0.64g
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  • 750g mixed dried fruit
  • 100g blanched whole almond, roughly chopped


    arr-mund or al-mund

    Sweet almonds have a subtle fragrance that lends itself well to baking and also works well with…

  • 100g chopped peel
  • 200g dried fig, roughly chopped



    Although not juicy, the fig is an incredibly luscious fruit, with a delicate aroma and sweet…

  • 100g glacé cherry, well rinsed and quartered
  • 300g plain flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon



    A fragrant spice which comes from the inner bark of a tropical tree. When dried, it curls into…

  • 1 tsp grated nutmeg



    One of the most useful of spices for both sweet and savoury

  • zest 1 lemon



    Oval in shape with a pronouced bulge on one end, lemons are one of the most versatile…

  • 250g lightly salted butter



    Butter is a dairy product made from separating whole milk or cream into fat and…

  • 250g light muscovado sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp clear honey



    Honey is made by bees from the nectar they collect from flowers. Viscous and fragrant, it's…

  • 1 tbsp black treacle
  • 4 large eggs



    The ultimate convenience food, eggs are powerhouses of nutrition, packed with protein and a…

  • ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda

    Bicarbonate of soda, or baking soda, is an alkali which is used to raise soda breads and full-…

  • 1 tbsp milk



    One of the most widely used ingredients, milk is often referred to as a complete food. While cow…

  • 3 tbsp brandy, plus extra to feed



    Brandy is a distilled spirit made from virtually any fermented fruit or starchy vegetable.…


  1. Heat oven to 140C/120C fan/gas 1. Line the base and sides of a 20cm cake tin first with a double layer of brown paper, then with a double layer of baking parchment. In a large bowl, mix the fruit, almonds, peel, figs and cherries. Turn well and add the flour, spices and lemon zest. In a separate bowl, cream the butter and sugar thoroughly, then add the vanilla extract, honey and treacle. Still beating, incorporate the eggs, then stir in the fruit and flour mixture. Dissolve the bicarbonate of soda in the milk and stir in thoroughly. Add the brandy by the spoonful, until you have a soft dropping consistency.

  2. Turn the batter into the cake tin and make a dip in the middle using the back of a spoon. Bake for 3½ hrs, then insert a skewer – if it comes out clean, it’s ready. If there is any cake mix on the skewer, give it 10 mins more and test again. When it’s done, remove the cake from the oven and leave to cool in its tin. The next day, remove from the tin, wrap in fresh greaseproof paper, then put it into an airtight tin or wrap tightly in foil. The usual thing is to keep the cake for at least a month before icing it, and to unwrap and sprinkle it occasionally with more brandy.

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Comments, questions and tips

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3rd Mar, 2012
This is a super easy tasty fruit cake loved it!
7th Jan, 2012
This is enormously worth making. I ended up adding the last dose of brandy about a week before layering on the marzipan, icing and decorations in one day, and it ended up as easily the most moist, flavoursome Christmas cake I've ever eaten. I hugely recommend you try this - it's pretty easy (I managed it) and tastes amazing!
26th Dec, 2011
This is delicious, moist and very easy to make even though it was already in the oven before I noticed the flour was still sitting on the kitchen counter top! So cake was taken out of oven dumped back into bowl to add the flour and then returned it to it's tin for the second time. I expected it to fail after that!!!! Made a fortnight ago and not added any more fluids to it. It has kept well and won't last long in our house as everybody enjoys it. Like everybody else - no icing added. Will be recommending to friends and wouldn't hesitate to make again as it was really simple apart from forgetting to add the flour!
26th Dec, 2011
I made this cake for the first time this year, and my family weren't very interested in trying it. They are tired of the old fashioned heavy fruit cake, I served out a small portion for everyone. and everyone was taken by surprise, they loved it. When it was going home time, they all helped themselves to a large slice to take home. An easy recipe and an excellent choice for a lighter Christmas cake.
24th Dec, 2011
i made this on the 17th dec and had to remake it again on the 23rd!! i did have friends round and i gave some to my sister, but this is soooo moist and fab, i used a bigger cake tin, and the cooking time was nearer, only an extra 15 mins, and i topped it with brazil nuts, flaked and whole blanced almonds. cherries, pecans, and hazelnuts, mixed together with syrup to stick . it looks fantastic,no one is allowed any till xmas!! i just cant wait till tomorrow to have a slice!!
18th Dec, 2011
started eating this the day after it was made DELICIOUS!! i added cranberries,fresh figs,ground almond and hazelnuts, just to use stuff up, and no booze as it was a very wet mix, still tasted amazing, i will be surprised if it lasts till christmas! did rise very high so make sure your paper is tall enough, will make again as husband and friends loved it, but i may use a bigger cake tin so its a large lower cake, as the slices were so large i was cutting them in half to serve, and then the slice seemed mean!!
blackbird17's picture
8th Dec, 2011
Made this yesterday and it was quite straightforward . I creamed the butter and sugar in my Kenwood food mixer and stirred the rest of the ingredients in, The bowl was only just big enough! I think I got a bit overenthusiastic with the brandy as my cake sunk just a little bit but once I've turned it upside down and covered it with home made marzipan no one will know !
2nd Dec, 2011
I baked this cake twice last year and three times this year. My cake guzzling husband rates it 5*s. After marzipan/icing them, I donate one cake each year to the local Riding for the Disabled Group for a "Guess the Weight" type raffle and it makes loads of £££ every time. Recipient is always delighted. Husband's one is half finished already !
dunnricky's picture
1st Dec, 2011
hav'nt made it or tasted it yet but rate it 5* just by looking at it :)))
30th Nov, 2011
This is now the traditional Christmas cake in our house, 3rd year running. Never gets iced, we always feel that that would spoil it. Make it 4 to 6 weeks before Christmas and feed it brandy every Sunday - unbeatable.


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