Caribbean Rum Cake

INGREDIENTS:

For the fruit:

  • 1 3/4 cups whole raw almonds, coarsely chopped (optional)
  • 1 3/4 cups dried or glace cherries, coarsely chopped
  • 1 3/4 cups prunes, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups currants
  • 1 1/2 cups large raisins, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups dark rum
  • 1 1/2 cups port
  • 3/4 cup candied orange peel, coarsely chopped

For the cake:

  • 3 cups plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 4 cups of unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 2 1/4 cups light brown sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup treacle

Method:
 

Fruit:

  1. Combine all the fruit in an airtight container and cover with rum and port. Stir occasionally in a cool, dry place for at least a week.

Cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 300°F. Grease and line 2 cake tins, 9-by-5-inch and set aside.
  2. Sift flour, salt, baking powder, cinnamon, clove, and nutmeg in a large bowl.
  3. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then add eggs one at a time, letting each mix in fully before adding the next. Add vanilla.
  4. Carefully add flour mixture, pre-soaked fruit and nuts along with any unabsorbed liquid, and treacle, then mix until just combined. Divide mixture evenly between the prepared tins.
  5. Bake for approx 2 hours until firm to touch and coming away from the sides of the tin.
  6. Cool for 30 minutes in the tins then turn the cakes out onto a rack, and brush each with dark rum.

Note:

This cake will keep for a long time and improves with age. Periodically add more rum by making small holes with a fork and pouring rum over the surface. Store wrapped in greaseproof paper in an airtight tin, in a cool place. I always have an airtight plastic box of dried fruits soaking in rum or brandy and use for this cake and many others – just top the fruit up when you take some out and pour more booze in. You can use tropical fruits – mango, pineapple, pawpaw etc. There are so many varieties of dried fruit in the supermarkets these days. Dried cranberries are delicious too. Bacardi rum or a white rum is good with tropical fruits. Don’t wait for a special occasion to make this cake – enjoy now!

 

Caroline's Death by Chocolate Cake

Caroline's Death by Chocolate Cake

 

This chocolate cake is moist and very fudgy and best of all, really easy to make!

 

Ingredients:
200g dark chocolate
200g dark brown sugar
200g caster sugar
25g cocoa powder
200g butter
85g self-raising flour
85g plain flour
¼ tsp bicarbonate of soda
3 large eggs
75ml milk

 

Ganache:
200g dark chocolate
284ml double cream

 

Method:
Grease and line a 20cm round cake tin and preheat the oven to 140C/ 160C/ Gas 3.
Place butter and chocolate in a heat proof bowl above a pan of simmering water and melt, stirring gently.
Mix flours, bicarbonate of soda, sugars and cocoa powder in a large bowl. Beat eggs and milk. Pour melted chocolate and butter and add egg mixture to the flour until thoroughly mixed. Spoon cake mix into cake tin and bake for 90 minutes (or until the top feels firm). Leave the cake to cool then turn out. When cold, slice the cake across into three layers.

 

Make the Ganache:
Lightly whip the cream until it just begins to stiffen. Melt the chocolate as before then combine with the cream mix, working quickly. Spread over cake layers and re-assemble, spreading remainder of ganache over the top and sides of the cake.
Decorate with chocolate curls or decoration of your choice.
Store the cake in a cool environment, in an airtight container, for up to three days.

 

 

 

 

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