• 500g dried fruit cake mix
  • 100g halved glacé cherries
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup soft brown sugar
  • 100g butter
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 2 cups flour (spelt or wheat cake flour)
  • 2 teaspoons bicarbonate of soda
  • 2ml salt
  • 1 egg (beaten)
  • 65ml brandy (plus extra)
  • 3ml nutmeg
  • 3ml cinnamon
  • 5ml mixed spice
  • 5ml ground ginger
  • 2ml ground cloves
  • 100g chopped pecans


  • STEP 1
    Place butter, sugar, dried fruit, cherries, a capful of brandy and boiling water into a saucepan.
  • STEP 2
    Boil for 10 mins. Add the spices and 65ml brandy and leave to cool.
  • STEP 3
    Sieve together the flour, bicarb and salt and add to the fruit mixture.
  • STEP 4
    Mix in the beaten egg.
  • STEP 5
    Pour the mixture into a greased and lined 20cm round baking tin. Use good quality baking paper or 2 layers of waxed paper. Make sure the paper is 5cm higher than the tin.
  • STEP 6
    Bake for 1 hour at 150°C and then cover with foil and bake for a further 15 minutes (or until a skewer comes out clean.)
  • STEP 7
    Allow to cool in the turned off oven with foil still covering for 20 minutes.
  • STEP 8
    Remove the cake from the oven and allow to cool completely before turning out onto a wire rack. Brush the top and sides with brandy. Cover with waxed paper and place in a cake tin.
  • STEP 9
    The following day, unwrap the cake and inject 25 ml brandy into the sides and centre of the cake using a glue syringe. Wrap well and place in tin.
  • STEP 10
    Repeat step 9 twice before Christmas. This cake is at its best when it has had 8 weeks to mature. This recipe makes a good wedding cake as it can be halved and doubled for multiple tiers and kept to be enjoyed on the first anniversary!

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