It’s Christmas! Are you as excited as I am??
I honestly hope that you’re enjoying the season, that your shopping is done, your gifts are wrapped, you’re finished work and you can spend the long weekend (at least!) relaxing, eating and drinking. And baking of course! Here’s hoping that I’ve managed to at least give you some Christmas baking inspo, or maybe that you’ve even made one of my recipes for your own celebrations.
This cake is definitely a special one! Last month I had the amazing opportunity to style and shoot some posts with a very talented photographer friend of mine, Grace Petrou. We had a lot of fun setting this Christmas scene and transforming the cake from it’s naked form to this elaborate, festive dessert, perfect for a wintery, white (I’m dreaming here) Christmas.
Inside the cake there are three layers of lightly chocolatey, fudgy, fruit cake, that are filled and coated with a light mascarpone cream. A chocolate ganache drizzle makes it oh-so-shiny, and we topped it with everything red we could find – pomegranate, raspberries and rose petals. Feel free to use whatever you have in season here! Poached pear would be amazing, as would be blood plums.
Wishing you all a very merry Christmas! May you all have a wonderful couple of days, filled with family, friends, laughter and of course, plenty of dessert. X
- CHRISTMAS CAKE
- 330g prunes
- 250g sultanas
- 250g raisins
- 180g butter
- 180g dark brown sugar
- 180g honey
- 80g Bailey's (or similar)
- 40g strong coffee
- 2 oranges, zest and juice
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp nutmeg, freshly grated
- 2 tbsp cocoa
- 3 eggs, lightly whisked
- 150g plain flour
- 80g almond meal
- ½ tsp baking powder
- ½ tsp baking soda
- ½ tsp sea salt
- MASCARPONE FROSTING
- 250g cream
- 250g mascarpone
- 55g caster (superfine) sugar
- CHOCOLATE DRIZZLE
- 50g thickened cream
- 50g dark chocolate
- CHRISTMAS CAKE
- Place the prunes, sultanas, raisins, butter, sugar, honey, baileys, coffee, orange zest and juice, cinnamon, nutmeg and cocoa in a medium pot on the stove.
- Bring to a boil over a high heat, then reduce to a simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool for 30 minutes.
- In the meantime, grease and line the base and sides of three 7' cake tins with baking paper.
- Preheat the oven to 150 C (300 F).
- Once the fruit mixture has cooled, mix in the eggs, followed by all the remaining dry ingredients.
- Divide the mixture between the prepared tins, and bake for 35 - 40 minutes. The top will be firm but still shiny.
- Allow to cool completely before removing from the tins.
- MASCARPONE CREAM
- Place all the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with whisk attachment, Whip on high speed until stiff peaks form.
- To assemble the cake, place one round on a serving plate top with a quarter of the mascarpone cream, spreading it out to the edges.
- Top with another layer of fruit cake and repeat.
- Place the last fruit cake layer on top and use the remaining cream to coat the sides and top of the cake.
- Place in the fridge to allow to set.
- CHOCOLATE GANACHE
- To make the ganache, place the chocolate and cream in a small saucepan over a low heat, and stir until the ganache is smooth, melted and combined.
- Pour over the cake and allow to drizzle down the sides.
- Decorate with seasonal fruit or as you wish!
- Keep refrigerated. Serves 10.
- Happy baking!
Christmas cake recipe adapted from Nigella.