With less than a month to go until Christmas, it’s time to start preparing for the festivities. Start shopping, buying gifts and baking your home-made Christmas fruit cake. Why not bake a healthy, rich and delicious Christmas fruit cake and gift your loved ones, rather than buying from a bakery. Try this simple non alcoholic Christmas fruit cake which will impress everyone.
How I made Christmas fruit cake
If you haven’t soaked your fruits yet their’s still time. You can soak your fruits for 24 hours and bake your cake or you can soak them for 2-3 hours and also bake your cake. This recipe gives great results either ways. If you are like me, who ends up with last-minute preparations then this recipe would be perfect to try out. I feel this is the closest to the authentic Christmas fruit cake recipe that I have tried. I hope you would like it too.
I prefer to soak my fruits for at least 24 hours. This recipe is otherwise pretty easy to follow. I have adapted the recipe from Nigella Lawson’s chocolate fruit cake.
Recipe of Christmas fruit cake
- 200 g of mixed dry fruits
- 50 g of nuts
- Fresh orange juice 3/4 cup
- Orange marmalade 2 tablespoon dissolved in 1/4 cup warm water
- Orange zest 1 teaspoon
- Whole-wheat flour 1/2 cup
- Almond meal 1/4 cup
- Cocoa powder 1 tablespoon
- Organic cane sugar or brown sugar 1/3 cup
- Eggs 2
- Mixed spices 1 teaspoon (mix of nutmeg, cinnamon, ginger, clove)
- Baking powder 1 teaspoon
- Salt a pinch
- Butter 1/4 cup
- Chop the mixed dry fruits ( raisins, apricots, dark raisins, dried cranberries, tutti frutti, cherries, dried figs, dates) and place them in a jar.
- Add fresh orange juice, orange marmalade mixture and orange zest Mix everything well. Keep them soaked for 24-48 hours in refrigerator. You can soak them for 2-5 hours and use them as well if you are in a hurry. If you are baking the cake on the same day you don’t have to refrigerate the fruits.
- After 24 hours take a non stick pan, add the soaked dry fruits along with the juice, sugar, spices, butter and cocoa powder.
- Stir and bring it to boil. Simmer for 5 to 10 mins with occasional stirring.
- Turn off the flame and use it when it comes to room temperature.
- Sieve the wheat flour, almond meal, with baking powder, and salt for 5-6 times.
- Beat the eggs and add them to the fruit mixture, mix them well.
- Fold the flour into the wet ingredients in batches, mix everything well until well combined.
- Add the nuts(cashew nuts, almonds, walnuts) and give it a stir.
- Scoop the batter in parchment lined baking tin, this cake gets baked for a longer time so there are chances of it to stick to the bottom. Hence it’s better to use parchment paper to line the tin.
- Bake at 150 degrees for 50 minutes to 1 hour or until done.
- You can use any dry fruits of your choice. The above mentioned were used by me. I used tutti frutti in lesser quantity than the other fruits. Traditionally tutti frutti weren’t used, so you can do without it.
- Since we aren’t soaking the fruits for months here we need to boil it. Heating gives similar results to aging the nuts in wine, rum or fruit juice.
- Use less of cinnamon as that tends to over power the other flavors.
- You can use orange crush as well instead of orange marmalade.
- To adjust the batter consistency use orange juice or water.
- For the above mentioned quantity that’s the time for baking. If you increase the quantity of the ingredients the baking time will also increase.
- 6.5-7 inch round, square or a medium sized loaf pan can be used for the mentioned quantity.
- Keep the cake in the oven for 15 minutes after turning it off and then in the baking tin for another half an hour before demoulding.
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