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Monday, March 10, 2008

Self-Layering Light Fruit Cake

I call this invented cake recipe ‘self layering’ because the gentle cooking temperature means that the fruit is able to settle a little. When the cake is cooked and turned out you end up with a bottom layer of soft, moist butter cake with almost no fruit, and an upper layer full of juicy fruit embedded in a little cake. Sounds like an accident (well, it was an accident), but it’s very tasty that way!

This is a two-day process as the fruit has to soak overnight.


Approx 1.5 metric (250mL) cups mixed dried fruit (mine included sultanas, mixed peel, currants, raisins and glacé cherries).
Enough sherry to cover the fruit

4 oz (110g) plus two tablespoons white sugar
4 oz (110g) margarine plus extra for greasing
2 large eggs, or 3 small eggs
4 oz (110g) self-raising flour
1 teaspoon vanilla essence


1. Place the dried fruit in a small bowl and cover with sherry, then sprinkle over two tablespoons of white sugar. Leave to soak overnight.

2. Preheat oven to 160 C / 320 F. Prepare a cake tin (cake pan) – I used a round tin with a 20cm / 8inch diameter and a capacity of about 1 litre / 16 oz – by greasing the tin with margarine then covering the base and sides with greaseproof paper (baking paper) and coating the joins with more margarine.

2. In a large mixing bowl, cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy.

3. Add eggs to mixing bowl and mix until fully combined.

4. Using a slotted spoon of some sort, lift the fruit out of the sherry mixture and add it to the butter mixture along with the vanilla essence. Reserve sherry mixture as it is used in the icing. Mix fruit in until fully coated in butter mixture.

5. Add sieved (sifted) flour to fruit mixture and stir until it forms a smooth batter around the fruit.

6. Spoon mixture into cake tin and smooth top. Place in oven and bake for about 40 minutes, or until top is golden. The top may still be a little moist and should appear bubbly when the cake is cooked.

7. Allow cake to cool completely in the tin (pan) before turning out. Ensure cake is completely cold before icing.


The Icing:

I expected this icing to harden when the cake was refrigerated, but it didn’t, so apparently I’ve invented an icing that stays very soft! It’s hard enough to stay where it’s put but still very sticky when touched, and it tastes delicious if I do say so myself!


1 cup sieved (sifted) icing sugar (confectioner’s sugar)
2 tablespoons margarine
2 tablespoons Philadelphia cream cheese
1 tablespoon milk
1 dessertspoon sherry mixture from fruit
1 teaspoon vanilla essence


1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl. Mash margarine and cream cheese into the icing sugar, then beat all ingredients until they form a smooth mixture.

2. Smooth onto cake using a flat utensil. The cake should be fruit-side-up when iced.

3. Keep cake refrigerated until serving so that icing doesn’t run.

4. Enjoy!

The last piece, right before I ate it!

1 comment:

Siri said...

It looks good. I'm thinking I might make it tomorrow, sans icing.