luxury christmas cake

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Cooking receipe to make luxury christmas cake under category Aga Recipes. You may find some video clips related to this receipe below.

luxury christmas cake

1 lemon

I1orange

225g dried apricots

175g stoned prunes

175g unblanched almonds

175g glace cherries

225g currants

125g sultanas

225g raisins

150 ml brandy rum port or sweet stout

125g chopped candied peel

350g self raising white flour

2 level tsp mixed spice

salt

300g unsalted butter softened

300g soft dark muscovado sugar

6 eggs size 3 beaten

4 tbsp treacle

To decorate:

apricot glaze

450g almond paste

450g ready to roll fondant icing

Grate the rind from the lemon and orange and squeeze the juice.

Roughly chop the apricots primes and almonds.

Wash dry and halve the cherries.

Mix the apricots prunes and citrus rinds and juices together in a large bowl with the currants sultanas and raisins.

Add the brandy (or other liquor) cover and leave to macerate overnight stirring occasionally.

The next day line a 250mm round or 230mm square cake tin with a double or triple layer of greaseproof paper.

Grease with butter.

Add the cherries nuts and peel to the macerated fruit mixture and stir well.

Sift the flour spice and 1/2 level tsp salt together.

In a large bowl cream together the butter and sugar until fluffy.

Gradually beat in the eggs beating well between each addition to prevent curdling. Stir in the treacle then fold in the flour and fruit.

Spoon the mixture into the cake tin level the surface then make a slight hollow in the middle.

Bake on the grid shelf on the floor of the simmering oven for approximately 12 hours. Test by inserting a skewer into the centre of the cake

If it comes out clean the cake is cooked.

The top of the cake does not brown but this will be covered by icing.

If you wish you can cover the tin and bake the cake the following day.

Leave in the tin until cool enough to handle then turn out onto a wire rack to cool completely in the paper.

When cold keep one layer of greaseproof paper on the cake then wrap in foil.

Store in a cool dry place.

Set the cake on a board.

Up to 1 week before christmas brush the cake with apricot glaze and cover with almond paste.

Leave to dry for 24 hours then cover with fondant icing and apply the decorations.

Secure a ribbon around the cake if desired.

Use seedless muscatel raisins if obtainable. Avoid using no need to soak dried apricots and prunes as you want them to soak up the brandy. To make the apricot glaze gently heat 125g apricot jam in a small pan with 2 tbsp water until melted. Boil for 1 minute then sieve. Use warm.

Applying the almond paste and fondant icing :

1. Dust the work surface with icing sugar. Roll out the almond paste into a round or square 75mm larger all round than the cake. With the help of a rolling pin lift the almond paste on top of the cake and allow it to drape over the edge(s).

Press the almond paste onto the sides) of the cake working it down to the board. Trim off the excess.

Repeat procedure to apply the fondant icing Dust your fingers with a little sifted icing sugar and gently rub the surface of the cake in a circular movement to buff the icing and make it smooth

Decorating the cake:

To make star decorations knead 450g fondant icing on a surface dusted with icinl sugar until pliable.

Knead in 1 tsp gum tragacanth or dental fixative (which helps th. fondant to dry and harden).

Roll the fondant icing out to a thickness of

3 mm.

Using a starshaped cutter stamp out about 40 stars and transfer to a baking sheet lined with nonstick baking parchment.

Sprinkle a little edible gold lustre powder on a plate and press some of the stars gently onto it.

A little power will stick to the surface.

Place on the baking sheet and leave in a warm place for at least 24 hours to dry out and harden.

When dry paint some of the plain stars with gold or silver edible food colouring.

If using gold leaf lightly brush a few stars with a little beaten egg white.

Press the gold leaf sparingly onto the stars.

Arrange all of the stars around the edge of the cake as soon as it is iced if possible pushing them lightly into the icing.

Or if the icing is dry use a little royal icing to secure them.

If using gold leaf it must be pure 24 carat gold otherwise it should not be eaten. Edible gold leaf gum tragacanth food colourings and lustre powders are available from specialist mail order supplier. Make this christmas cake any time from mid november to mid december. Dont be tempted to use margarine the butter gives a wonderful flavour and improves the cakes keeping qualities. Store tightly wrapped to prevent the cake from drying out spear occasionally with a skewer and feed with a drop of brandy.

Makes 30 to 40 slices

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