The holiday season is a time of warmth, joy, and delightful treats. One such traditional delight that graces many tables during Christmas is the Steam Christmas Fruit Cake.
This delectable cake is rich in flavor, moist, and studded with an assortment of dried fruits and nuts. Whether you’re a seasoned baker or a novice in the kitchen, this recipe is sure to make your festive celebrations even more special.
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The Essence of a Steam Christmas Fruit Cake
The Steam Christmas Fruit Cake is renowned for its dense, moist texture and its ability to keep well for an extended period, making it a perfect holiday treat to prepare in advance.
The cake is enriched with dried fruits soaked in alcohol, which not only imparts a luscious taste but also contributes to its longevity.
The cake’s unique cooking method involves steaming rather than baking, resulting in a wonderfully moist and even consistency.
How To Prepare Steam Christmas Fruit Cake Recipe?
- 2 cups mixed dried fruits (raisins, currants, chopped dates, candied peel)
- 1/2 cup chopped nuts (almonds, walnuts, or pecans)
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- Three large eggs
- One teaspoon of vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup molasses
- 1/4 cup brandy or dark rum
1. Prepare the Fruits:
Start by preparing the dried fruits. Combine them in a bowl and pour the brandy or dark rum over them. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let the fruits soak for at least 24 hours, allowing them to plump up and absorb the flavors of the alcohol.
2. Prepare the Batter:
In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice, and salt. Set this dry mixture aside.
In a large mixing bowl, cream the softened butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, ensuring each is fully incorporated before adding the next. Stir in the vanilla extract and molasses.
4. Combining the Mixtures:
Gradually add the dry mixture to the creamed mixture, mixing just until combined. Avoid overmixing, as this can result in a tougher cake.
5. Folding in the Fruits and Nuts:
Gently fold in the soaked dried fruits along with any residual liquid, followed by the chopped nuts. The mixture should be well-distributed, ensuring every bite is filled with delicious fruit and nut goodness.
6. Prepping for Steaming:
Grease a round cake pan and line the bottom with parchment paper. Pour the cake batter into the pan, smoothing the top with a spatula.
7. Steaming the Cake:
Create a water bath for steaming by placing a heatproof dish or rack at the bottom of a large pot. Fill the pot with water, ensuring it doesn’t touch the dish or rack. Place the cake pan on the dish or rack. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid.
8. Steaming Process:
Steam the cake on low to medium heat for about 2 to 3 hours. Check the cake’s doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center; it should come out clean when the cake is ready.
9. Cooling and Storage:
Once steamed, carefully remove the cake from the pot and let it cool in the pan for a while. Then, transfer it to a wire rack to cool completely. Once cooled, wrap the cake in plastic wrap and store it in an airtight container. Allow the cake to mature for a few days before slicing and serving, as this allows the flavors to meld and develop.
Nutritional Information Of Steam Christmas Fruit Cake Recipe
Note: Nutritional facts can vary based on the specific ingredients used.
While the Steam Christmas Fruit Cake is undeniably indulgent, it does offer some health benefits due to its dried fruit and nut content. These ingredients provide dietary fiber, essential vitamins, and minerals such as potassium and magnesium.
- Dust the cooled cake with powdered sugar for a festive touch.
- Serve slices of the cake with a dollop of whipped cream or a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
- Enjoy with a warm cup of spiced tea or mulled wine.
1. Store the cake in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week.
2. For longer storage, wrap the cake in plastic wrap and then aluminum foil, and refrigerate for up to a month.
3. Alternatively, freeze slices of the cake for up to three months. Thaw in the refrigerator before consuming.
What Is Best To Soak The Fruit In For Christmas Cake?
For a Christmas Cake, I use apple juice or pineapple juice. I prefer pineapple as it is more fruity and you can taste it on the cake. I hope you enjoy this recipe as much as we have over the years.
How Do You Keep A Christmas Cake Moist?
A Christmas cake is best kept in the fridge so it stays fresh. You can keep it up to three weeks. It is very moist because of all the fruit in it.
How To Steam A Fruit Cake?
The secret to a moist Christmas cake is to steam it. The fruit and currants should be soaked in some juice; then, the cake should be steamed for four hours.
I prefer to steam the cake in a decorative mold. If you are not going to serve it straight away, freeze the cake and thaw it at room temperature before serving it.
Conclusion: A Heartwarming Tradition Revived
The Steam Christmas Fruit Cake embodies the spirit of the holiday season – it’s a labor of love, patience, and a deep connection to time-honored traditions.
As you embark on the journey of creating this delightful treat, remember that it’s not just a cake; it’s a piece of culinary history that brings families and friends together.
With its rich flavors and the joy it spreads, the Steam Christmas Fruit Cake is truly a gift worth savoring during the most wonderful time of the year.