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There might always be a ton left over after New Year, but a Christmas cake is still an absolute must over the festive season. Here’s a great recipe on making one that will ensure people try and cram it down even after a huge Christmas dinner.

Before we start, make sure you have all the appliances and utensils you need for making as cake. Visit this electric appliance shop for all your electricals like mixers, even cookers, whilst Lakeland is a great place for various other utensils.


1kg mixed dried fruits – a combination of raisins, sultanas, currants, cherries, cranberries, prunes, and even pineapple

Zest and juice of 1 orange

4 large eggs

200g light muscavado sugar

175g plain flour

250g softened butter

½ tsp baking powder

150g ground almonds

½ tsp ground ginger

1 tsp ground cinnamon

150ml brandy, sherry, whiskey or rum, plus extra for ‘feeding’

 To finish:

500g ready-made marzipan

675g icing sugar

3 eggs

3 tsp lemon juice

1 ½ tsp glycerine

How to make

  1. Combine all the mixed fruits, zests and juice, butter, alcohol and sugar in a saucepan and bring to a simmer. Then pour into a bowl, cool, cover and leave overnight.
  2. Heat oven to 150C (130 for fan). Line the base and sides of a 20cm round deep cake tin with baking parchment. The side lining will need to be about 5cm higher than the edge of the tin.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients to the mixture and stir well, ensuring all the flour is mixed in. Tip into the tin and level the top with a spatula. Bake in the centre of the oven for 2 hours.
  4. Take the cake out of the oven and poke holes in it with a skewer. If the skewer is clean then the cake is done. If it has mixture on it then put it back in the oven for another 20 minutes and repeat the process.
  5. Wrap well in cling film to store. To feed the cake, pour 1-2 tbsp of alcohol over the skewer holes every week or so until you ice it. Don’t feed it for the final week so it has chance to dry before icing.

To finish:

  1. Roll out about 300g of marzipan into a large circle and, using the cake tine as a guide, cut a circle to fit on top of the cake. Roll out 2 long strips with the trimmings to fit around the side of the cake.
  2. Sieve the icing sugar.
  3. Whisk the egg whites in a bowl until they become frothy.
  4. Add the icing sugar to the egg whites a spoonful at a time and fold in. Add the lemon juice and glycerine and give it a good stir.
  5. Spread over the top and sides of the cake, making it as rough or smooth as you like. If you need to thin the icing down then use more egg white.
  6. Leave to set and decorate as desired.

And most of all – enjoy!