• Cake, Dessert

  • Difficulty: Moderate

  • © The Vegetarian Society

Christmas Fruit Cake

This delicious rich fruit cake, decorated with fruit and nuts rather than icing, makes a wonderful centrepiece for the table. Because fruit cakes are so dense they tend to rise a lot less than a sponge, so the lack of eggs is less of a problem.

  • Serves 6

  • Preparation 15 mins

  • Cooking 3 hrs

Christmas Fruit Cake
  • Dairy-Free

  • Egg-Free

  • Suitable for Freezing

  • Vegan

Ingredients

For the cake
  • 75g soya flour
  • 300ml water
  • 175ml sunflower oil
  • 100g muscovado sugar
  • 1 tbsp rum of brandy
  • 1 orange, zest and juice
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 50g flaked almonds
  • 225g mixed ready-to-eat dates and figs, chopped
  • 750g mixed sultanas, currants and rasins
  • 225g plain wholemeal flour
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • Extra rum or brandy
For the topping
  • 100g hazelnuts
  • 100g pecan nuts
  • 100g whole almonds
  • 100g glace cherries
  • A selection of candied fruit pieces
  • 4 tbsp apricot jam

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C/gas mark 3.
  2. Cream the soya flour and water together.
  3. In a food processor or blender, mix the oil, sugar and creamed soya flour (this helps to aerate the mixture).
  4. Transfer to a mixing bowl and add all the dried fruits, almonds and rum or brandy. Add the flour and mixed spice gradually, mixing well.
  5. Line an 8" or 9" cake tin (round or square) with baking parchment.
  6. Transfer the cake mixture to the cake tin, packing the mixture down well to make sure there are no air pockets. Tie 2 sheets of baking parchment around the outside of the tin with string to prevent the cake from burning.
  7. Bake for 2 ½ hours, or more until cooked. A skewer inserted into the middle of the cake which comes out clean indicates that the cake is ready. You may find that the top starts to darken too much before this happens, in which case, cover it loosely with foil.
  8. When the cake is cooked, remove it from the oven, but leave it in the tin. Use a skewer to make holes all over the cake and drizzle extra rum or brandy over the surface. Allow it to soak in and repeat once or twice more, depending on how alcoholic you like your cake to be!
  9. Allow the cake to cool for 10 minutes in the tin, then remove and leave on a cooling rack until completely cold.
  10. Arrange a selection of nuts, glace cherries and candied fruit pieces in a decorative pattern on the top of the cake.
  11. Heat the apricot jam gently in a small saucepan and use a pastry brush to brush it very gently over the top of the fruit and nuts. You may need to build up a layer or two to give the cake a nice shine.

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