Apologies this is a bit late, I made my Christmas cakes in November and had meant to post then but at this time of year life can get busy. I've made this Christmas cake for four years now and so I have no idea where I first came across the recipe but it never fails and is easy and delicious.
You will need:
-340g plain flour
-1/2 tsp cinnamon
-1/4 tsp nutmeg
-1/2 tsp mixed spice
-pinch of salt
-170g soft brown sugar
-55g glace cherries
-25g mixed peel
-finely grated rind of one lemon
-280ml soya milk (I just use whatever plant milk I have to hand, usually oat)
-70g soya margarine
-1tsp bicarbonate of soda
How to make it:
Line a 4 inch round cake tin.
Preheat the oven to 180C.
Sift the flour into a large bowl and rub in the margarine.
Stir in the sugar, dried fruit, cherries, mixed peel and lemon rind.
Add all but 2 tbsp of the plant milk and stir in gently.
Put bicarbonate of soda in a cup, heat the 2 tbsp till warm and pour into the cup. Stir.
Pour the mixture from the cup into the bowl and stir in without beating.
Pour the mixture into the cake tin, smooth the top and hollow out the centre a little.
Bake for 1 hour at 180C and the reduce the heat to 165C for a further 45 mins.
Then the usual, check it's done using a cake tester and place on a wire rack to cool a little before removing from the tin to fully cool down.
* I use more spices than in the recipe, I love the taste of all of the Christmassy spices so I use them liberally!
* If you think the top is going to start to burn but the cake still needs longer in the oven to cook through then cover with foil for the rest of the baking time.
* I have never tried icing a cake and icing never really appeals so I mix the rest of the glace cherries with some apricots and mixed nuts (which I've dry baked for 10 mins at a fairly low heat) with some warm jam (usually orange or apricot) and decorate the top with that.
If you're a busy bee too and haven't quite got round to making your cake then there's still time. I know they are often made early so that they can mature and can be fed with brandy to make them extra boozy on Christmas day but there's no rule, this tastes just as good an hour after it emerges from the oven!
I do have to mention that the tree in the background of the first picture is one of the fantastic living Norwegian Spruce trees that we have been selling in the shop only I got mine last year and have just brought it in to spend Christmas in the warmth with us. It really is nice to watch it grown and thrive throughout the year and then bring some of the garden indoors!
This may be my last post of the year so I'll say it now, Merry Christmas everyone, have a lovely time whatever you are doing and I hope the new year is all you hope it will be. I'm hoping next year is full of positivity, compassion and well, co-operation!