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Christmas cake When and how?

(46 Posts)
fourtothedozen Fri 14-Aug-15 21:03:58

OH and I really enjoy christmas cake over the festive season, but always disappointed with shop bought ones. Considering baking one this year. How soon in advance? Any good recipes, I like most fruits/nuts, although not too many raisins or sultanas.

CityDweller Fri 14-Aug-15 21:07:37

I'm a fan of the recipe in one of Nigella's books - the baking one. It always comes out really well, but it is heavy on the sultanas, currants and raisins (as any traditional xmas cake would be, as it's a rich fruit cake!). My mum likes Nigel Slater's one. And I'll bet Delia has a good classic recipe.

I usually make mine at some point in October. Google 'stir up Sunday'

Northernlurker Fri 14-Aug-15 21:19:48

I make the Nigella one from Domestic Goddess too but I like a dark cake so I use treacle instead of marmalade. I try to do it in October/ November but it has been known to get done in December. Still good.
Whatever recipe you use make sure you soak the fruit in booze for at least overnight beforehand.

Jenijena Fri 14-Aug-15 21:22:15

I've done the Delia one (available online) for years. Always comes out well unless you put too much booze (more than the recipe)in at the beginning which makes it a bit crumbly.

Have made it in September, November and December but have also used a 'spare one' from the year before.

SisterMoonshine Fri 14-Aug-15 21:32:00

I do Delia's or Nigella's. usually October half term.

cookiefiend Fri 14-Aug-15 21:39:09

We use delias one but my grandfather really like a Rachel Allen one we make for him now as it is lighter and contains crystallised ginger so a bit Different.

nagynolonger Fri 14-Aug-15 21:52:56

I'm another for October and Delia.

I did a lighter one with lighter coloured fruit(dried apricots etc), white sugar and golden syrup. It tasted fine but didn't look right.

fourtothedozen Fri 14-Aug-15 21:54:29

I liketheidea of the crstallised ginger cookiefiend, I also love spices, cinnamon, cloves etc. I don't want a hotch potch but brazil nuts? Figs? I like candied peel too but don't want to go too off plan. It is a traditional cake I am aiming for. My OH likes to eat his with a slice of Wensleydale and a glass of port.

ConstantlyCooking Sat 15-Aug-15 10:07:33

I make the simmer and stir one on the bbc good good website. Ŷou start by simmering fruit, butter etc so don't need to pre-soak fruit and it cooks within 2 and a half hours. Tastes great as well! I usually make it during October half term.

70isaLimitNotaTarget Sat 15-Aug-15 10:16:18

I use an adaptation of the Delia recipe from my really really old book (not sure if it's changed at all in the more recent/online) but I check about 45 minutes earlier and progress from there.

I don't like dark cake so I use caster/golden caster sugar, sultanas,cherries, no treacle, a mix of nuts-brazils,almonds,pecans,walnuts,macadamia.
I use fresh peel lemon and orange not candied peel.
I don't use spices.

Soak the sultanas in Amarretto a week before. (I do mine in December, it doesn't need to mature long)

Delia marzipan/almond paste recipe with Amarrettto again.

Royal icing.

chandelierswinger Sat 15-Aug-15 12:05:25

I did Delia's every year then tried Mary Berry's for the first time last year and it was DELISH! I make mine in October and feed with brandy every/other week until marzipanning in mid December, then icing (fondant) a few days after (to let marzipan dry a bit).

ILikeToClean Sat 15-Aug-15 15:31:17

Another one here who rates the simmer n stir one from the BBC good food website. It's really easy, tastes gorgeous and not too heavy. Normally make it October/November.

DonkeyOaty Sat 15-Aug-15 15:36:54

I use the box mix from Waitrose. Is excellent. About a tenner but often half price in October.

I used to make my gran's recipe but lost it over several house moves. Boo hoo!

Off to Google Mary Berry's...

jennyperru Sat 15-Aug-15 22:03:13

Really recommend Mary Berry's recipe, I've used it for years. I make the cake on the first weekend in October and then feed with brandy until early December when it gets marzippaned and iced. Always delicious.

WorktoLive Sun 16-Aug-15 18:50:42

I've done my Christmas cakes on August bank holiday Monday before - DP is usually working and I am not and it's quite a good activity if the weather is bad. It is then fed liberally with brandy until the big day.

I often use the recipe in the Be-ro book, but I think I might try the one mentioned here this year.

ahbollocks Sun 16-Aug-15 19:54:00

Always delia and always first week of October. I don't include booze though, but I do feed it orange and apple juice

VeryEarlyDays Sun 16-Aug-15 20:07:23

does anyone substitute brandy with a different alcohol?

smellylittleorange Sun 16-Aug-15 23:51:41

I've done layers a few weeks amaretto then rum then brandy ..was delish more like a pudding lol! I glaze fruit and nits and paint with apricot jam and a bit of gold leaf

smellylittleorange Sun 16-Aug-15 23:52:07

Nuts not nits!

IssyStark Tue 18-Aug-15 12:10:29

very I've done both rum and whisky in different years as well as brandy.

We've tended to do Delia in the past but may well look at Nigella and Mary Berry given the recommendations here.

jn367502 Tue 18-Aug-15 12:49:53

can anyone recommend a nice easy recipe and can you add amaretto instead of brandy to a Christmas cake?

happygirl87 Tue 18-Aug-15 12:54:49

For anyone who wants easy, I REALLY recommend the waitrose boxes- I think it's Delia, it has all the dry ingredients pre weighed and costs about £10. You just follow the recipe on the box and add eggs, lemon and maybe butter.

jn367502 Tue 18-Aug-15 14:07:59

Thanks happygirl

lunar1 Tue 18-Aug-15 14:36:16

Can anyone recommend an alcohol free recipe? I really don't like the taste in cakes. Preferably one that uses lots of nuts.

WorktoLive Tue 18-Aug-15 14:39:32

You could just substitute lunar. Eg if the recipe says start by soaking your dried fruit in alcohol, use orange juice instead.

If you need to add liquid later, just add more juice or milk.

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