Christmas fruit cakes always remind me of my father. Every Christmas, my grandmother would present my dad with this alcohol-soaked brick. He would gorge himself on that stodgy mass for months, finally finishing his cake just in time for the next Christmas.
Needless to say, I hadn’t developed a taste for fruit cake until recently. It was recently that I stumbled upon a modern fruit cake recipe. One that didn’t require weeks of diligent feeding. Mind you; I think my granny enjoyed the feeding process – a tot of whisky for ol’ cakey and 2 tots of whiskey for granny.
The point is fruit cakes are actually delicious and fun to make.
How Long in Advance to Bake Your Christmas Fruit Cake
Gone are the years of baking your cake weeks in advance, unless you want to. You can easily bake it the day before, leaving it to cool overnight for pure indulgence the next day. However, if you want to go old school, it is recommended that you start your baking process on “Stir-Up Sunday”, which is the last Sunday before the advent starts – 20.11.22.
How to Feed Your Christmas Fruit Cake
Cake likes to eat. Each time you feed your cake, the flavours develop.
It is best to use strong alcohols like whiskey and brandy to feed your cake, but it is up to you.
After baking, poke holes in your cake with a skewer and spoon over 2 Tablespoons of alcohol. Leave the cake to cool in the tin.
When removing from the tin, remove the baking parchment and reapply a clean sheet.
Continue to feed your cake every 2 weeks. Each time you feed it, rewrap your cake in clean baking parchment, followed by a sheet of tin foil. Overfeeding your cake will result in a soggy cake.
Do not feed your cake the week before Christmas. During this period, the cake’s surface has to dry in preparation for icing.
Modern Christmas Fruit Cake Recipes
There are infinite options online when it comes to fun and playful flavours for Christmas fruit cakes. The more modern flavours require less feeding than the classic brandy, sherry and whiskey varieties.
Be sure to try on the below recipes for a showstopper!
Decadent Hazelnut Liqueur Fruit Cake (tasty, but less boozy)
Italian Fruit Cakes with Frangelico Sauce (boozy and creamy!)