It's getting close to that time of year... we can't use the word yet... but some advance baking is usually appropriate. We don't like to start thinking about ... er.. the season at Midwinter until at least after Hallowe'en but just so that you can start to prepare we have found an excellent recipe for - it's no good I'm going to have to say it, Christmas Cake. This has come from the Suma website for which we thank them very much.
This recipe is a family fruit cake recipe that can be easily adapted to make a suitable Christmas Cake for vegans. It’s a tried and tested recipe, handed down from Suma member Wendy Abbott’s mum. It’s a family favourite, and has been made many times over by different members of her family. It includes brandy which is optional, as some people prefer their cake without it. Once baked you can decorate it as you like, go traditional and use marzipan and icing sugar, try something totally different or leave it plain. The flavour of the fruit is enough for it to be utterly delicious on it’s own.
Preheat your oven to Gas Mark 4 (180C or 350F)
1. Sift flour, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and mixed spice in to a large mixing bowl, then rub in the dairy free spread.
2. Stir in the sugar, currants, sultanas, raisins, peel and cherries.
3. Add the lemon rind and give it a good stir.
4. Add all but 2tbsp of the soya milk and stir lightly.
5. Heat the remaining soya milk in a pan or microwave so it is warm but not boiling, you should be able to touch it without burning your finger. Pour on to the bicarb and then stir it thoroughly into the mixture, without actually beating.
6. Put into a lined 8" (20cm) diameter tin, smooth and slightly hollow out centre.
7. Bake at about Gas Mark 4 for an hour, then turn down to Gas Mark 3 (170C or 325F) for a further 45 minutes. It’s done when a normal skewer comes out clean.
If you are going to use the brandy:
Leave the cake to cool and then prick with a cocktail stick and feed with a third of the brandy. Wrap the cake in greaseproof paper and store in an airtight container or tin. You can pour the rest of the brandy over the cake at weekly intervals. It will keep for 4-6 weeks easily