Saturday, December 12, 2015

Christmas Fruit Cake / Old fashioned Rum Cake

Last year this time I had posted the Christmas fruit cake (no alcohol no soak) recipe. And I made a mental note to try the real version soon, the all out caramel-alcohol fruit soaked plum cake. And I did. Well, it wasn't easy. I scoured my cookbook collection, referred a few trusted sites and arrived at my recipe. I made a small test batch (1/4th of the below recipe) before a few months for recipe testing and was happy with it.
Here I am sharing the all famous Old fashioned Christmas Rum cake sold in bakeries across Indian during this season.
The color of the cake depends on the sugar used and the dry fruits you use. The more darker dry fruits you use, like raisins, dates the darker the cake will be. I used a good mix of dark and light colored dry fruits and hence the honey golden cake.



Ingredients:
For the Fruit Soak:
Dry Fruits - 4 cups
(I used a mix of the following
Candied fruit and peels - 1 cup
Raisins - 1/2 cup
Golden raisins - 1/2 cup
Dried Cranberries - 1/2 cup
Dates - 1/2 cup
Dried Figs - 1/4 cup
Dried Apricots - 1/2 cup
Candied ginger - 1/4 cup)
You could use the dry fruits based on your liking to a total of 4 cups.
Dark Brown sugar - 1/2 cup
Orange juice - 1/2 cup
Water - 1/2 cup
Rum - 1/2 cup (Can substitute whisky)

For the cake:
All purpose Flour (Maida) - 2 cups + 1/2 cup
Salt - 1 tsp
Baking powder - 1-1/4 tsp
Baking soda - 1/2 tsp
Cinnamon - 2 tsp
Ginger - 1 tsp
Cloves - 1/2 tsp
Nutmeg - 1/2 tsp
Butter - 1 cup (softened)
Dark brown sugar - 1 cup (see notes)
Eggs - 4 (room temperature)
Vanilla - 2 tsp
Nuts - 2 cups, roughly chopped (Use a mix of almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts and sunflower seeds)

Method:
Before a day of making the cake, make the caramel fruit soak. Heat the dark brown sugar in a saucepan stirring occasionally to let the sugar caramelize and become darker. Remove from heat and add water, orange juice. Add the 4 cups of dry fruits and allow it to come to a boil. Remove from heat and mix the rum. Allow it to cool completely and transfer to a non-reactive storage container (no plastic or aluminium or non-stick), glass or steel is a better option. It can be stored for 2 weeks to 2 months. Don't forget to give a nice mix with a clean, dry spoon every 2-3 days. This can be stored in room temperature and need not be refrigerated. The alcohol in the fruit mix acts as a preservative.
On the day of making the cake, preheat the oven to 350 F. Grease several ramekins with butter, this recipe makes 8, 2 cup size cakes. 
Drain the soaking liquid from the fruits and reserve separately. 
Sieve the dry ingredients, starting from flour (2 C) to nutmeg several times until well mixed. 
Add 1/2 cup of flour to the fruits to coat well. This makes sure the fruits are evenly suspended in the cake and does not sink to the bottom.
Beat butter and sugar until smooth. Add eggs one by one, mixing well after each addition, followed by the vanilla.
Add the flour mixture and the reserved liquid from the fruits alternatively to the butter mixture and mix lightly after each addition. You should mix just until no streaks of flour remain. Add the fruits and the chopped nuts and mix with a spoon. Divide equally into greased ramekins and bake for 40-45 minutes.
When the cakes come out of the oven brush a little rum over the top when it is still hot. This brushing with rum step is optional though.
Allow to cool the cakes in the pan. When cooled completely, remove from the pans. If you are gifting to friends and family, bake in a aluminium foil pan and pack it in for gift giving.
This cake can be made ahead and stored. It is like banana bread, the taste gets better the next day.
Notes:
This cake recipe is not glaringly sweet. It is mildly sweet with the sweetness coming from the soaked fruits.

2 comments:

  1. Tempting to try.. would feel more easier if you could have posted stepwise pictures dear. Anyhow will give a try out :-)

    ReplyDelete

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