I learned the process of making of Traditional Christmas cake from one of my ex-colleagues Granny who was from Kerala. Indian or it is better to say the Anglo-Indian Recipe of the Christmas cake is a bit different from the Typical Western Version of the same. I just adore the entire process involved in making the Traditional Christmas Cake. It is not complicated but requires lots of patience and love. I still remember her uttering “it actually is the old utensil, aged liquor concoction, the love we put while mixing and baking you know; that makes your Christmas cake different! It should not be perfect but rich; it can have the crack on the top but that makes the cake close to us!”
My childhood memories are all about the big fat joint family and especially the colorful events that I had celebrated as part of the beautiful family in Kolkata. The morning of Christmas is one of them. The smell of the freshly baked cake and the age-old Cake maker that we had there in Kolkata. Rangajethu( my uncle) purchased it from the Canteen of Ordnance Factory since he was working there in OF. My Rangama (aunt) used to prepare the cake and the gang of kiddos including me were too much curious about the process of cake making. For me, Christmas is always ‘Borodin”, the banter, the visit to the zoo with the freshly baked cake and fresh sandwiches and oranges.
Every year it was a simple vanilla flavored Christmas Cake with a pinch of Cinnamon and lots of dry fruits and not a single drop of alcohol! Rangama is no more today but I still feel the aroma of the freshly baked cake every year on the Christmas Day. For me, that was the ultimate cake for Christmas for years and to be very frank I was not aware of the typical traditional version of the Christmas cake then.
This cake requires some preliminary preparation including Soaking Fruits in Rum or Brandy for at least for 1 month. I have shared the process in another post. Though Candied Peel and Candied Gingers are easily available in the market, however, this year I have used homemade candies. Click on the links for further details.
- All Purpose flour: 2.5 Cup
- Butter at Room Temperature: 2 Cup
- Granulated Brown Sugar: 1.75 Cup (I prefer my cake moderately sweet)
- Rum Soaked Fruits and Dry Fruits: 2 Cup
- Rum: 4 Tbsp. ( to be taken from the Rum soaked fruit for better flavor)
- Candied Orange Peel: 2 Tbsp.
- Candied Ginger: 1 Tbsp.
- Cinnamon Powder: 1 Tsp.
- Nutmeg Powder: 1 Tsp.
- Clove Powder: ½ Tsp.
- Baking Powder: 1 Tsp.
- Baking Soda: 1 Tsp.
- Egg: 5
- Icing Sugar: for decoration
- Pre-heat the oven in 140 degree C for 20 minutes.
- Take all purpose Flour in a large bowl and add Baking Powder, Baking Soda, Cinnamon Powder, Clove Powder, Nutmeg Powder and mix properly.
- In another large bowl take Butter at room temperature and using an electric blender start beating it on medium speed to get a creamy mixture.
- Add Brown Sugar to the butter and continue beating until the sugar dissolves and the mixture turns creamy and fluffy.
- Add eggs one by one to the mixture and continue beating.
- Now add Rum Soaked Fruits and Dry Fruits to the mixture and lightly fold the mixture using a spatula.
- Add roughly chopped Candied Orange Peel and Candied Ginger to the mixture and fold lightly.
- Now start adding Flour to the mixture and lightly mix. Don't add entire flour at one go.
- Add 2 Tbsp. Rum from the leftover Rum soaked Fruits mixture to the batter and mix well.
- Take a 10 inch Cake pan or any Cake pan available with you and pour the mixture into it. I am available with a 10-inch cake pan and the mixture prepared was exactly accurate for my pan.
- Place the cake pan on the middle rack of the oven and bake for 1 to 1.5 hours in 140 degree C.
- Insert a toothpick after one hour of baking and if it comes out clean then the cake is ready else bake for some more minutes.
- Give the cake a stand of 15 minutes before demolding.
- I don't like to garnish this traditional cake much so just poured 2 Tbsp. of Rum and some Icing Sugar on the cake.
Butter can be proportionately substituted with refined Oil
For this cake, baking in low temperature is necessary, and hence I baked in 140 degrees C for more than an hour.
#Pictures of Christmas Cake updated in 2017!