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1. Place all the fruits in a bowl and pour over the brandy. Stir well and place in a warming drawer or a warm oven set to 60°c for 2 hours. Grease and double line with greaseproof paper a 20cm cake tin.
2. Preheat the oven to 140ºC.
3. Sieve the flour and spices into a large bowl and stir in the almonds, orange and lemon rind. Cream the softened butter and dark brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time followed by the treacle.
4. Gradually fold in the flour, spices, almonds and rinds. Fold in the soaked fruit. Mix well to combine and distribute the fruit throughout the mixture. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and smooth off the surface with a palette knife. Cover the top of the cake loosely with a double circle of greaseproof paper.
5. Place in the oven using the wire rack on shelf 2. Bake the cake for one hour at 140°C then reduce the oven temperature to 120ºC and continue to bake for a further three hours or until the cake feels firm to the touch and a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean.
6. Allow the cake to cool in the tin then remove when it’s cold. If desired, the cake can be re-wrapped in greaseproof paper and placed in an air-tight container then stored in a cool dark place for up to three months, brushing occasionally with more brandy or sherry to prevent it from drying out.