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Jamaican rum Christmas cake


Serves: 20-24
timePrep time: 1 hr 10 mins
timeTotal time:
Jamaican rum Christmas cake
Recipe photograph by Kris Kirkham

Jamaican rum Christmas cake

Based on a Caribbean black fruit cake recipe, this is rich, dark and very boozy! Follow our tip to make it gluten free

Serves: 20-24
timePrep time: 1 hr 10 mins
timeTotal time:

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Nutritional information (per serving)
Calories
338Kcal
Fat
10gr
Saturates
5gr
Carbs
51gr
Sugars
43gr
Fibre
3gr
Protein
4gr
Salt
0.2gr

Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson is a food writer, baker and our former Acting Food Director. Mitzie has been writing recipes for magazines for over 30 years, and was editor of BBC Good Food and Delicious. Her particular speciality is creating show-stopping bakes.

See more of Mitzie Wilson’s recipes
Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson

Mitzie Wilson is a food writer, baker and our former Acting Food Director. Mitzie has been writing recipes for magazines for over 30 years, and was editor of BBC Good Food and Delicious. Her particular speciality is creating show-stopping bakes.

See more of Mitzie Wilson’s recipes

Ingredients

  • 200g dried prunes, chopped
  • 200g raisins
  • 100g sultanas
  • 100g dried pineapple, chopped
  • 125g dried Morello cherries, or more raisins
  • 50g stem ginger, finely chopped
  • 125ml dark rum, plus extra to feed if desired
  • 125ml port
  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 50g ground almonds
  • 1½ tsp ground mixed spice
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1⁄4 tsp ground nutmeg
  • finely grated zest of 2 oranges
  • 175g soft unsalted butter, plus extra to grease
  • 175g dark muscovado sugar
  • 2 tbsp black treacle
  • 4 medium eggs, beaten
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 150g fresh pineapple (peeled and cored weight, from a whole pineapple)
  • 1 tbsp stem ginger syrup from the jar
  • 175g icing sugar, sifted

Step by step

Get ahead
For a deeper flavour, soak the dried fruit for up to 1 month. The undecorated cake will keep for up to 3 months.
  1. Put all of the dried fruit and the stem ginger in a bowl, then pour over the rum and port. Stir, cover and leave to soak for at least 24 hours, or up to 1 month.
  2. Preheat the oven to 150°C, fan 130°C, gas 2. Grease and line the base and sides of a deep 20cm round cake tin.
  3. Place half the soaked fruit in a food processor and blend to a thick purée.
  4. In a mixing bowl, combine the flour, almonds, spices, orange zest and a pinch of salt. Place the butter, sugar and treacle in a mixing bowl and beat together until light and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs and vanilla extract.
  5. Stir in the dry ingredients followed by the blended fruit and the remaining soaked fruit, until well combined.
  6. Spread the mixture into the prepared cake tin. Bake for 21⁄2 hours, or until a skewer comes out without any sticky cake mixture clinging to it. Cool in the tin for 15 minutes, then turn out to a wire rack. The cake will be crumbly when freshly baked, so wrap and mature for at least a week before eating. To store, wrap the cake in baking paper and place in a cake tin (not an airtight container). If you want to feed the cake, prick it all over with a cocktail stick and spoon 1-2 tablespoons of rum over the cake roughly once a week, up to 4 times in total (if you add too much rum, the cake may fall apart!).
  7. When you’re ready to decorate the cake, preheat the oven to 120°C, fan 100°C, gas 1⁄2. Slice the pineapple into 1-2mm thick rings; you should end up with about 8 slices. Arrange on a wire rack set over a lined oven tray. Brush lightly on both sides with the stem ginger syrup and bake for 1-2 hours, until golden and dry but still flexible; the oven time will depend on the ripeness of the fruit. While warm, press into the cups of a muffin tin. Leave to firm up
  8. Gradually mix 2-21⁄2 tablespoons of water into the icing sugar until you have a thick smooth icing. Spread over the top of the cake with a palette knife, then ease some of the icing over the edge and down the sides. Decorate with the pineapple flowers and leave to set.
    Tip
    Use gluten-free self-raising flour, and add 1⁄2 tsp xanthan gum with the dry ingredients. You will need more liquid, so add the juice of 1 orange in step 5.

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