Ingredients

75g ground almonds
1 1/2 tsp ground mixed spice
3/4 tsp xanthan gum
3 medium eggs
165g butter
165g dark soft brown sugar

Soaking Mix

450g mixed dried fruit- 200g currants, 125g sultanas, 125g raisins
85g pitted dates (stones removed and finely chopped)
60g glace cherries (halved)
1.5 tbsp black treacle
1 large orange (grated zest and 125ml juice and water if necessary)

Finishing

35g-50g of each of whole peeled almonds, brazil nuts, walnuts and glace cherry halves
50g apricot jam

Additional Equipment

Deep 20cm cake tin

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Method

1. Place soaking mix ingredients into a large mixing bowl. Cover and microwave for 2 minutes.

2. Stir and set aside to soak for a minimum of 8 hours or overnight.

3. Line the base and sides of a deep 20cm cake tin with a double layer of greased baking parchment paper ensuring the sides of the paper come up at least 5cm above the top rim of the tin. Cut 2 x 20cm circles of parchment paper, one to cover the base, the other to cover the cake during cooking.

4. Beat the butter and sugar together until soft and creamy with an electric whisk.  Add all the other cake ingredients in the bowl and beat together with an electric whisk for 2 minutes. Stir in the soaked fruit mix.

5. Spoon mixture into the prepared tin. Smooth the top surface with a spatula.

6. Top with lines of almonds, pecan nuts walnuts and glace cherries. Lay the prepared circle of parchment paper on top.

7. Place on the bottom shelf of an oven preheated to 150°C/130° Fan/Gas Mark 2 and cook for 2 – 2 1/2 hours.

8. Test the cake to check if it is cooked by inserting a fine skewer into the centre; if it comes out clean the cake is cooked. If the cake requires additional cooking retest every 20 minutes until the skewer comes out clean.

9. Rest cooked cake on a cooling tray. Remove top parchment paper and brush over nut topping with warmed apricot jam to glaze. Leave cake until completely cold before turning out.

10. Store cooled cake wrapped in baking parchment paper in an airtight tin or wrapped in foil and keep in a cool place.

11. Rest cake on a cake board and tie with a decorative festive ribbon before serving. 


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