A great baking tip from a few decades ago. “To extend the life of your cake store with an apple or a couple of sugar lumps. “It’s a long time since I’ve seen sugar lumps but I am sure you can still buy them.
I don’t know about you but once the temperature has dropped I start craving for more filling loaf cakes especially fruit ones and with all the different types of tea infusions available today it can change the taste easily.
I used Twinning’s Turmeric with Orange & Star Anise for this recipe as it has such a strong taste and I thought it would really compliment the fruit. I wasn’t wrong it was really tasty.
In the recipe I had put 300g of caster sugar but over the years I have made lots of fruit cakes for my Dad who was a diabetic and I just cut out the caster sugar and added a couple of tablespoons of Canderel or similar. It tastes just as nice.
Ingredients – Serves 12
4 Twinning’s Turmeric with Orange & Star Anise teabags, 400g dried fruit, 1 Orange, 1 Large Egg, 300g Caster Sugar (or 2 Tables Canderel), 400g self-raising flour, 2 tablespoons Orange Marmalade (Diabetic Sugar Free if preferred).
Put your four teabags into a measuring jug and add 300ml of boiling water. Leave to brew for a few minutes then remove the tea bags. Put the dried fruit into a large mixing bowl and grate over the zest of the orange. Stir well. Pour over the dried fruit and leave to infuse for about four hours or overnight.
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas4. Line a litre loaf tin with loaf tin liner. Whisk the egg and add the bowl of fruit and the sugar. Add the flour and squeeze in the juice of the orange.
Mix until you have a dough like consistency then spoon the mixture into your tin and bake for around 1 hour 10 minutes until cooked through after testing with a skewer to see if it comes out clean.
Pop two tablespoons of the orange marmalade into a bowl and pop into your microwave for 20 seconds then brush over the top of the cake.
2 x Turmeric, with Orange & Star Anise teabags (Twinings, or one of your choice)
225g dried Fruit ( like raisins, sultanas etc)
225g self-raising flour
1 orange (grated)
2 large eggs (beaten)
150g light brown sugar (reserve 50g for sprinkling on top of cake)
Put two teabags in a cup or mug and fill with boiling water ( ¾ full if in a mug)
Put dried fruit into a large bowl, add the grated orange then pour over the tea and leave to soak overnight or for 2-3 hours
Preheat oven to 180°C/160°fan/gas 4
Grease or line a 2lb loaf tin
Add the brown sugar to the beaten eggs and whisk lightly
Add the eggs and flour to the bowl of fruit and fold in completely until it represents a dough-like consistency
Spoon mixture into the lined tin and sprinkle the remaining brown sugar on the top
Bake for 40-50 mins in the middle of the oven
Test by poking a skewer into the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean it’s cooked, if not give it a few more minutes
Remove from the oven and leave to stand for 5 mins
Remove from loaf tin and leave to cool on a wire rack
1. For a really moist fruitcake, use marmalade instead of candied peel.
2. Always soak your dried fruit overnight and for extra flavour soak the fruit in apple or orange juice or marinate in your favourite liqueur (brandy) for three days, stirring it every 12 hours.
3. If you are adding dried fruit then it should be plump and soft, if it has gone horrible and hard, then soak in hot water for a few minutes before adding it to your mixture
4. For an extra rich, tasty fruitcake, use cold coffee instead of milk.
5. For a moist fruitcake with extra flavour, grate a cooking apple into the mixture.
6. For a moister fruitcake in electric ovens or Agars, place a dish of water on the floor of the oven when baking.
7. Always cool fruitcakes for 10 to 15 minutes on a rack in the dish in which they were baked. Then turn them onto the rack and carefully peel off the paper.
8. Fruitcakes freeze very well; however, they must be aged for at least a few weeks before freezing, as they do not mellow and ripen while they are frozen.
9. To keep the calories down grate an orange and only use half the sugar.
10. Completely dust the fruit and nuts with flour so they don’t fall to the bottom of the batter while baking. Shake off excess before incorporating into the recipe.
It’s National Cake Week this week in the UK so get out your scales and pop on that Pinney to make your special cake this week.
A movable feast that is always celebrated in the first full week of October. National Cake Week was founded by Lynn Hill in 2011, with the sole purpose of celebrating and sharing a whole cake together with family and friends. You will find a cake at the heart of almost every formal and informal gathering, whether in the office, a family birthday party, or a wedding and who doesn’t love a slice or two?
Cakes come in all shape sharing sizes, round, square and rectangular. Semi-naked, the cake of course, not the baker, with a feather-light sponge, filled and topped with fresh fruit, or a chocoholic overload that is sure to send you into a sugar rush high.
Whatever the occasion, National Cake Week is the time to celebrate the humble cake in all its glory. Share your creation on social media using the hashtag #nationalcakeweek
Also, share in here for us all to admire.
I thought you might enjoy this easy three minute spelt bread recipe. It is way tooo easy to not give it a go ……
500g spelt flour
10g fast-acting dried yeast
half teaspoon sea salt
50g sunflower seeds
50g sesame seeds
500 ml warm water
Preheat oven to 200C/Gas 6
Combine all the ingredients, adding the water last
Mix well and turn the dough into a greased lined loaf tin
Put straight into the oven and bake for one hour
Remove loaf and turn it out of tin, then return it to the oven without the tin for a further 5 -10 minutes.
400g Mixed Dried Fruit
375ml (13fl oz)hot Fruit Tea Bags
100g Caster Sugar
75g Brown Sugar
2 Medium Eggs (beaten)
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
1 tablespoon Cocoa
1 teasp vanilla extract
275g Self Raising Flour
Soak fruit with the hot tea for at least a couple of hours or overnight
Heat oven to 180C, Gas 4 or 350F
Mix in all the other ingredients one at a time until well mixed
Line your loaf tin
Pour cake mixture into the tin
Bake for 45 – 50 minutes or until the skewer comes out clean
For a really moist fruit cake, use marmalade instead of candid peel.
Always soak your dried fruit overnight and for extra flavour soak the fruit in apple or orange juice or marinate in your favourite liqueur (brandy) for three days, stirring it every 12 hours.
For an extra rich, tasty fruit cake, use cold coffee instead of milk.
For a moist fruit cake with extra flavour, grate a cooking apple into the mixture.
For a moister fruit cake in electric ovens or Agars, place a dish of water on the floor of the oven when baking.
Add 2 tablespoons of salad oil to your cake mixture, as this can keep the mixture moist and less crumbly.
Make sure the oven is hot.
Put the fruitcake dish in a baking dish half-filled with water to prevent burning around the edges.
To prevent burnt, hard-crusted fruitcakes, cover pans with aluminum foil for the last 1/2 hour of baking. If at any point the cake is browning too fast, place a sheet of foil over it to give it some ‘shade’.
Pop your skewer into the centre of the cake to test for doneness, don’t just guess by the colour.If it comes out clean, crumb-less and carefree, the cake is done! Be careful not to over-bake!
Always cool fruitcakes for 10 to 15 minutes on a rack in the dish in which they were baked. Then turn them onto the rack and carefully peel off the paper.
When the cakes are cool, poke some narrow holes in them with a skewer or cake tester then sprinkle the cakes with a few tablespoons of liquor, being sure not to get the cakes too wet!
If you plan to store it for a long period of time, wrap the cake in brandy or wine-soaked towels, then in aluminum foil.
Non-liquor soaked cakes may be kept in a cool place or in a refrigerator for short-term storage or a freezer for long storage. Fruitcakes freeze very well; however, they must be aged for at least few weeks before freezing, as they do not mellow and ripen while they are frozen.