Xmas Cake

Made my Xmas Cake today. When it comes to Xmas cakes I go by Delia’s rule of equal flour, butter and sugar. Todays mix:

16oz each of organic white flour, butter and soft brown sugar and 8 organic free range eggs. Cream butter & sugar, whisk the eggs then add to creamed butter mix gradually. Once all mixed fold in the flour and a couple of pinches of salt.

To this I then add whatever I have in the pantry. Today included handfuls each of chopped prunes, figs, sultanas, walnuts and stem ginger (and a glug of the syrup). A tablespoon of treacle, then the spices: cinnamon, allspice, nutmeg/mace are my favourites at Xmas. Grated zest of an orange and lemon and then a few tablespoons of last years extremely boozy mincemeat.  The sugar and booze have preserved it and it is now the most luscious mincemeat ever.  Its ridiculously boozy and contains, as far as I can remember, brandy, rum, port, whisky and some more sloe brandy for good measure. The flavours have had a whole year to develop and mellow together and it is going to be in most of my Xmas concoctions this year.

Butter then line the cake tin with parchment, pour in the cake mixture then stick on the bottom shelf of an oven heated to 140C for about 4 1/2 hours or however long it takes until a skewer comes out from the cake clean. Leave to cool in the tin then wrap in parchment then tin foil and transfer to whatever container your going to be keeping it in (I use a big metal biscuit tin) and feed with brandy as often as you like until Xmas, I usually feed it about once or twice a week.

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