When I was young, my version of Christmas was huge colorful stars, carols and Christmas fruit cake. We got cakes from our neighbors, however amma never baked one. If she was here today, she would have been amazed by my baking experiments. Bakeries are filled with colored fondant cakes which are deadly delicious and sweet one, and after having eaten neighbor’s cakes, we will seek some more, and appa will finally buy from the bakeries.
In case of Fruitcakes either you love it or you hate it there is nothing in between. We are in the first type of cake lovers. Just the other day when I was talking to my friend Andrea, and told her that we had gone to Specs and bought some rum and brandy for making the cake, she was enthusiastic to know the name of rum and brandy. She also asked me which cake was I planning to make, I told her I am making a fruit cake, and can I give you one. Her answer was sudden “No”, surprise me with anything else but not fruit cake. I have decided to make a chocolate rum raisin cake for her, but as she has gone to see her family and is out of town, I will make it for her at a later date.
Last year I made a traditional fruit cake, but this time I don’t want to make caramel as my little one will be around in kitchen all the time pulling and pushing everything she can get her hands on. So I made a cake without Caramel, however I didn’t see any taste difference in both version. I used dry fruits like, cranberries, apricot, figs, dates, raisins and some tutti fruiti (nothing but colored papaya pieces). I had bought Figs thinking of making biscotti, but ended up using it in fruitcake; you don’t normally encounter Figs in a fruit cake.
I love to collect spices, but get to use only a small part of my collection. Hence for the fruit cake I used almost all my spice collection. I didn’t have any candid peels in hand, so skipped that part. I soaked the dry fruits in brandy for 72 hours, if you soak for more time, you will get more flavors. Normally I will drain the dry fruits while adding to dough, this time, my hubby told me, why you are not using the fruit soaked brandy, use it in cake. If you don’t want to use alcohol, use orange juice, surely the flavor will differ slightly, still it will taste good. This time I skipped adding cashew nuts and used a combination of hazelnut and blanched almond. I smeared the nuts in almond extract to make them more flavorful.
While looking at Dundee Christmas cake in the internet, I was inspired by that idea of topping the cake with almonds. I topped the fruitcake with both hazelnut and blanched toasted almond in concentric alternating circle. Though making this cake is a 2 hours procedure, starting from assembling all ingredients, separating egg whites and yolk and baking them in the oven, it is worth all the effort. If you are fan of fruitcake, try this one sure you will be amazed by its flavor and taste. Here goes the recipe.
Print recipe from here
For first version of Fruit cake take a look at here
What you need
Raisins: 1/2 cup
Dried Cranberries: 1/2 cup
Dates: 1/2 cup (11no chopped finely)
Dry apricot: 1/2 cup (9 no chopped finely)
Dried Figs: ½ cup (6 no remove the top and chopped finely)
Tutti Fruti: 1/2 cup/112g ( Dried and colored papaya pieces )
Brandy /Rum: 1 ½ cup ( I used Brandy, Christian brothers and Conqueror Gold Spanish Brandy )
Hazelnut (Chopped finely): ¼ cup
Almond (Chopped finely): ¼ cup
Almond extract: 1/8 tsp
Cake flour : 2 cup/313g
Butter : 14 Tablespoon (1 1/2 sticks)
Granulated sugar: 1 1/3 cup
Salt : 1/2 teaspoon
Egg yolk: 4 at room temperature
Egg whites: 4 at room temperature
Baking powder: 11/4 teaspoon
Orange juice: 1 cup
Vanilla extract: 1teaspoon
Caraway Seeds: 1 teaspoon (powdered)
Ground nutmeg: 1 teaspoon
Ground Cinnamon: 1 teaspoon
Ground cloves: 1/2 teaspoon
Ground cardamom: ½ teaspoon
Ground ginger: 1/2 teaspoon
Hazelnut: 1/3 cup/44g
Blanched Almonds: 1/2 cup/ 53g
How I made:
Chop all the dry fruits including nuts into small pieces and soak them in brandy for at least one day advance. I soaked for them form 72 hours. Smear the nuts with almond essence and keep it aside.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter the bottom of a 9 inch cake pan and 5-inch loaf dish. Line the bottom with parchment paper, then butter and flour the pan.
Sift together cake flour, salt, baking powder and spice powder in a bowl and keep aside.
Separate egg whites and yolk. In a bowl beat egg whites using a hand mixer until you get white peaks and keep aside.
In an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together on medium speed, until everything mix well and incorporated. Add egg yolk one at a time to sugar butter mixture and mix well. Then add vanilla extract and orange juice mix everything and combined well. Add flour-salt-baking-spice powder mix and soaked fruits in small quantities and incorporate everything. Scrape down the sides of bowl once at twice. And fold in fruits and nuts into the batter. Stop the mixer and fold egg whites gently until no white streaks visible.
Pour the batter into the prepared pans and smoothen the tops with a spatula. Top the batter with blanched almonds and hazelnuts in concentric pattern alternatively. Bake for 1 hour or until skewer comes out clean.Keep a pan full of water in the oven when baking the cake (replace water if needed to keep it topped up).
Cool the cake in pan for 15 minutes and later invert them and cool completely for 45 minutes. Keep cake one or two days before serving.
Preparation time: Soaking 72 hours + 2 hour
Yield: 15 serving
Will you make it again: yes I will
I am sending this delicious cake to
Twelve days of Bloggie-mass; 4th day hosted by a moderate life
Bakeomania by Suma
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