Prep 24 hrs
Cook 2 hrs
My grandpa made this cake at Christmas time when I was a kid
- 3 tablespoons whiskey
- 6 ounces currants
- 6 ounces sultanas
- 4 ounces glace cherries
- 3 ounces mixed candied peel, finely chopped
- grated rind 1 small orange
- grated rind 1 small lemon
- 5 ounces butter, at room temperature
- 5 ounces soft brown sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 8 ounces plain flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons ground almonds
- 4 ounces whole blanched almonds
- 1 miniature bottle single malt Scotch whisky (3 1/2 tablespoons)
- Begin the night before by weighing the fruit and peel into a bowl and sprinkling it with the 3 tablespoons of whisky. Mix well, cover and leave overnight.
- Pre-heat the oven to gas mark 3, 325°F (170°C). Put the butter and sugar in a mixing bowl and beat with a wooden spoon until light and fluffy – or use an electric mixer for more speed. Whisk the eggs separately, then, a little at a time, beat them into the creamed butter and sugar. Next, using a large tablespoon, carefully fold in the sifted flour and baking powder. Your mixture needs to be of a soft, dropping consistency so, if it seems too dry, add a dessertspoon of milk.
- Now, carefully fold in the ground almonds and then the currants, sultanas, cherries, mixed peel and orange and lemon zest. Then spoon the mixture into the prepared cake tin, smoothing it out evenly with the back of the spoon. If you don't intend to ice the cake, arrange the whole blanched almonds in circles on top of the mixture, but do this carefully and lightly; if they are pressed in they will sink during the baking. Place the cake in the centre of the oven and bake for 2-2½ hours or until the centre is firm and springy to the touch.
- Let the cake cool in the tin for 30 minutes before taking it out to finish cooling on a wire rack. Then 'feed' it – make small holes in the top and base of the cake with a cocktail stick or small skewer, then spoon over a few teaspoons of malt whisky – wrap it in double silicone paper and store it in foil or an airtight container till needed. If you like you can feed it again before icing or eating.