Christmas baking 2016

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This year’s Christmas baking included the fruit cake and gingerbread men. It’s the first time I’ve tried gingerbread as my kid wanted me to replicate the recipe, the teacher taught at school. After searching high and low for a gingerbread man cookie cutter, I bought the last one available in a home-wares shop. I baked the cookies and the kids decorated them. It was very difficult transferring the the dough onto the baking sheet, so I just turned the baking paper with the cut gingerbread men onto the sheet. Lots of them broke and my kids wondered, why there were many amputations! Very glad about the outcome though. 

The fruit cake was a quick one without soaking or alcohol. I used fresh fruits instead of the fruit cake mix. It was a trial, but a successful one. I’m very happy with the taste. Can’t wait to have more on Christmas day with wine and sparkling grape juice for the kids.

 

Recipe for Christmas fruit cake:

Dates      1/2 cup

Prunes      1/2 cup

Blueberries   1 cup

Cherries    1 cup

Zest of 2 Oranges

Orange juice   1/2 cup

Water   1 cup

Unsalted butter   125g

Maple syrup  3 tablespoons

Jaggery    1 cup

Sodium bicarbonate   1 teaspoon

Boiling water    1 tablespoon

Wholemeal self-raising flour   1 cup

Plain flour   1 cup

Cardamom powder    1 teaspoon

Ginger powder    1/4 teaspoon

Nutmeg powder   1/4 teaspoon

Cinnamon powder  1/4 teaspoon

Vanilla extract   2 teaspoon

Cashew nuts    a handful

Maple syrup to brush  1 teaspoon

 

Boil the fruits, zest, juice, water, butter, maple syrup and jaggery for five  minutes. Mix sodium bicarbonate with the boiling water and add to the fruit mixture. Mine turned green due to the chemical reaction with the fruit juice, but didn’t affect the cake. Cool for an hour. Preheat oven to 150 degrees Centigrade, fan-forced. Grease and line a 20cm round baking tin with two or three layers of baking paper. Lightly beat eggs and add to the fruit and mix well. Sift the flours and add along with the spices and vanilla extract. Mix well and pour into prepared baking tin. Tap tin three times on benchtop and bake  for 45 minutes and then bring the oven temperature down to 130 degrees Centigrade and bake for another 20 to 30 minutes, till a knife or skewer inserted into cake has no uncooked batter. Cover the whole tin with aluminium foil and allow to cool. Then brush maple syrup over the cake and decorate with the nuts. Wrap with baking paper or plastic wrap and then, again with foil, Store away from heat and light.

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Merry Christmas!

🙂

 

 

 

 

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