Shwet's Sizzling Wok

A foodie's delight

Traditional Christmas Cake

on December 24, 2014

Hello Foodies !! Wishing all my dear reader a Merry Christmas !! And thanks for all the support which keeps me going 😛

Yes, This is my 100th post in my blog, and it ought to be special isn’t it 😉 Its christmas time, and I really miss my hometown Mangalore, As my dad’s most of the friends were catholics, We were used to going out with them for christmas dinners, parties etc which was in their houses. And the food served there was sooo very delicious !! Best part of the dinner was the cake and other christmas goodies.

In mangalore, there is a bakery called “Joseph’s Bakery” in Falnir, Where they bake the best of the best christmas plum cake, I have grown up eating that. My parents always made it a point to get it for us every now and then !! Yes, they bake it 365 days a year, as its their signature dish.

Here’s presenting to you, a humble attempt of mine in replicating the fruit cake of Joseph’s bakery. I adapted this recipe from Maria’s menu. The cake turned out to be similar in taste like that of what I had tasted in mangalore. So this attempt was totally worth for the smiles and appreciation I got from my Hubby and friends 🙂 The process is little time consuming, But its totally worth the effort. So this Christmas, Surprise your family with a home-baked christmas cake 🙂

Ingredients
For Soaking:
  • Mixed fruits – 3 cups (Black raisins and tutti fruity)
  • Rum/Brandy – 1.5 cups (I used old monk dark rum)
For Caramel:
  • Sugar – ½ cup
  • Water – 1 tbsp
  • Warm water – ¼ cup
For Cake:
  • Plain flour (maida) – 2 cups
  • Baking powder – 1¼ tsp
  • Baking soda – ½ tsp
  • Sugar – 1 cup+ 2 tbsp
  • Unsalted Butter – 250 gms (1 cup + 2 tbsp, approx) @ room temp
  • Eggs – 4 @ room temp
  • Vanilla essence – 2 tsp
  • Jam – 1 tbsp (I used apricot)
For Spice Powder:
  • Cloves – 2
  • Cardamom – 2
  • Cinnamon – a small piece
  • Nutmeg – a small piece
Method
  1. Soaking of Fruits – I used just the black raisins, As I didn’t find tutti fruity in the market. Try to soak it for a minimum of 1 week, at least. Shake the jar of soaked fruits once in a while. Normally it is soaked for 1.5 months.
  2. Caramel Preparation – Combine ½ cup sugar & 1 tbsp water in a sauce pan. Heat it & let the sugar melt. When the color of the melted sugar becomes dark brown, remove the pan from fire & add ¼ cup warm water to this. You need to be very careful at this stage since the water tends to splash & can cause burns. Bring it back to the heat & boil for a few more mins, 3-4 mins. Remove from fire & let it cool completely. You can prepare the caramel in advance & refrigerate it.
  3. Spice Powder – Grind all the spices with a pinch of sugar, to a fine powder & keep aside.
  4. Preheat the oven @ 180 C for 10-15 mins, before baking.
  5. Drain the soaked fruits & keep aside. Retain 4 tbsp from the drained liquor. Toss the drained fruits in 1-2 tbsp of flour. (This will prevent the fruits from sinking to the bottom of the cake). Sift the plain flour with baking powder & baking soda. Powder the sugar & keep aside. Separate the yolks & white of the eggs. Beat egg whites till soft peaks form. Keep aside. Beat the egg yolks & add the softened butter to it. Beat it till it forms a smooth paste. Add powdered sugar to this, gradually. Beat after each addition. When it becomes smooth add vanilla essence & cooled caramel & spice powder & beat again. Add the sifted flour in 2 batches. Beat after each addition. Add jam & combine.
  6. Fold in the beaten egg whites in 2 parts & combine till no white streaks are visible. Fold in the soaked fruits & 4 tbsp of retained liquor (I added all the remaining rum, coz I wanted a strong taste, However its your choice) Grease the baking dish with butter and little flour. Pour the batter into the prepared tins. Bake in the pre heated oven for 40-45 mins or until the skewer inserted comes out clean. The baking time can vary depending on the oven & also the size of the tin used. (Mine took around 1 hour)
  7. Alcohol free version – Soak 3 cups of fruits in 1.5 cups of fresh orange juice. Leave it overnight @ room temp. The rest of the recipe is same.
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