This isn’t the typical American fruit cake. Made from a mixture of dried fruit soaked usually in sherry, I’ve used orange juice in this one so the sherry doesn’t overpower the Guinness. The cake gets better with a few weeks age for the flavors to develop. It’s a great one for celebrations and Christmas so guests can take a piece home with them and enjoy when they like!
- 1 pound mixed dried fruit, (raisins, currants, prunes, blond raisins, cranberries)
- 1 cup orange juice or sherry
- 1/2 pound butter
- 2 cups brown sugar
- Grated zest of 1 orange
- 2 tablespoons treacle, (or golden syrup)
- 300 ml warm Guinness
- 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
- 4 eggs
- 4 cups plain flour
- 1 teaspoon each nutmeg, allspice and cinnamon
- 3 ounces diced candied ginger or peel
- 2 tablespoons whiskey
- Cover fruit with orange juice and allow to macerate overnight. Drain well.
- Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease and line a 9 or 10 inch cake tin with brown paper or parchment.
- Using electric beaters, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the rind and treacle and beat again until incorporated.
- In a separate large bowl, Combine the Guinness with the soda and carefully beat in the eggs.
- Sift the flour and spices together, and gently fold a quarter into the creamed butter and sugar. Add a third of the Guinness mixture, and continue to add remainder of flour and Guinness alternately, ending with flour.
- Stir in the macerated dried fruit and the ginger, and mix well.
- Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour, then reduce oven to low then cook for a further 1 - 1/ 2 hours or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
- Take out of oven, immediately sprinkle with the whisky, cover top with a sheet of parchment and then wrap a layer of newspaper and a towel. Allow to cool like this. (This cake is best stored for at least 1 week before eating to allow flavours to develop and will get even better after a month. Store in a sealed container in a cool spot for up to 3 months.)