Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Christmas Cakes 2012 Part 1 :o)

I decided that today was going to be my Christmas-Cake-Making-Day :o) For the past couple of years, it's been a bit of a mad rush around the middle of November to get them made, what with one thing & another - the one thing being Shaun & the other being . . .  yep, you got it - Shaun :o)
Anyhoooo - I gathered together all the ingredients, tins, scales, stripy apron, well worn & grubby cook book etc. & set to :o)
 Top tip no. 1 - always soak your mixed fruit in brandy overnight. Not only does this plump up the fruit & help keep the cake moist,  when you take the cling film off the bowl, you get a nose full of boozy scrumptiousness that reminds you of Christmas :o) 

 Top tip no. 2 - Lining your tins :o) After you've drawn around your tin on greaseproof paper, fold the greaseproof in half to cut. You'll end up with a better shaped circle to line the bottom of the tin :o)
 I had 7 cakes to make today - one large one & 6 smaller ones.
 This really doesn't look very appetising, does it ? :o)
 But, once it's all creamed together & the flour & eggs have been added, it looks much better. I wonder what it'd taste like cooked just like this, with no fruit. I'll have to try it one day - if it tastes half as nice as it smells, I might be on to a winner :o)
 Bung in the mixed peel & glace cherries, along with a good slug of brandy. (Hic !!)
I don't drink, but I do love to make Christmas cakes that have the potential to be lethal !!! :o)
 Whack in all the booze soaked mixed fruit & hope to goodness your arm muscles are strong enough to mix, mix mix . . . dig down deep to the bottom & make sure all that fruit is mixed in thoroughly :o)
 The mix is so thick, the wooden spoon can stand up by itself :o)

 Cake mix poured into the tins & ready for the oven. A slight dip is made in the middle because we don't want the cake to rise to a point.
 The sun was shining brightly through the window, hence the golden glow :o)
 All that leaves is the washing up . . . . sighhhhhh . . .

Followed by top tip no. 3:

 A large cup of coffee & a couple of digestives :o)
Well, I think I deserved them after all that creaming & mixing !! :o)
Four hours later, here they are, all cooked to perfection. Well, almost :o)  The one at the back, on the left hand side seems to have done its own thing & risen a bit more on one side. But, not to worry :o)  When it comes to marzipanning, I'll just take a big knife & slice it level. However, before that can happen,  I need to make a few skewer holes in the bottom of each cake &  over the next week or 2, feed them some more brandy :o)
I must remember to tell the recipients to go easy on their medication for a few days before Christmas - I can't have them all high as a kite, can I ?!! :o)
Or can I ?? :o)  <cue evil cackle !!>
Part 2 when it's marzipan time :o) 


  1. Ooooooooh you have been busy! I am drooling gran used to use a lot of Brandy in her Xmas cakes too, when she made our wedding cake she was so worried it wouldn't keep so she overdid the brandy a bit. The bottom tier must have got an extra dollop or two - when the cake was put together a definite list to one side appeared.... we just took the top two tiers off and pretended it was meant to be like that. Everyone ate the cake, it just topped up the alchohol intake of the day!!! LOL
    Still trying to find out what is happening next Weds, will let you know as soon as I do! Love to you both xx

  2. Thank you for taking the time to take all of these photos and give these wonderful tips! Fantastic!

  3. I have a tradition of making mine in half term, comes from the days of working term time only!!! This year I was poorly during half term but hope to make mine this week; I have all the ingredients ready.

  4. I dont bother any more, I'm the only one that eats them