Friday, June 5, 2009
BOILED FRUIT CAKE
If one day I were to become heavy, thick, dense and slow I'll call myself a fruit cake. Because that was what this fruit cake was all about. Thick, heavy, dense and S-L-O-W. It took 3 and a half or more hours (I lost count!) to cook at 140 C and all I could do was to wait and whimper.
It was quite maddening considering how hot the kitchen gets with the oven being on for hours on end and the fact that I couldn't run anywhere else to cool down except towards the kitchen sink whenever I stepped into the kitchen and of course it didn't make things any easier considering that the whole country at this time of year feels like 140 C in itself.
But, that being said, it was a very good fruit cake and it was one of the easiest to mix. This is a boiled fruit cake from a recipe book by Marry Berry called, believe it or not, "FAST CAKES"!?!
I made it easier though by using ready mixed fruit since I wouldn't have been able to differentiate the taste of the fruits once it became cake anyway (and as if I would know the difference between raisins and currants!) and this recipe required no soaking of the fruits at all. It is a very simple recipe and one that I wouldn't exchange for any other where fruit cake was concerned. It cuts extremely well and looks so smart and neat when sliced, in addition to being moist and just nice sweet, that it was perfect for the wedding cake that I made and decorated a few posts back.
Here's the recipe...........
14 oz (397 gm) can condensed milk
5 oz magarine (I used butter)
*8 oz raisins
*8 oz sultanas
*8 oz currants
*4 oz glace cherries
8 oz plain flour
2 level tsp mixed spice
1 level tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 level tsp bicarbonate of soda
*Instead of all those fruits I used 28 ounces of ready mixed fruit and it turned out fine.
Heat the oven to 140 C and grease and line a 7 inch round cake tin.
Pour the condensed milk into a heavy based pot, add the butter/magarine fruit and glace cherries. Place over a low heat until the milk and magarine have melted, stir well and then simmer gently for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave to cool for about 10 minutes.
Sieve the flour into a large bowl, together with spices and bicarbonate of soda and make a well into the centre. Add the eggs and cooled mixture (you could also add some nuts at this point) and mix until well blended. (What I actually did was to add the flour mixture and eggs into the pot of boiled fruit and mix. Turned out fine and saved me washing a bowl).
Turn the mixture into the baking tin and bake for hours and hours. If the centre feels firm and doesnt give way it's done. Leave to cool for 10 minutes before turning out of the tin.