We’re sorry, it’s not quite christmas yet but we’re not sorry that it’s time to get one little, absolutely luxurious treat ready…Gluten Free Vegan Christmas Cake!
Yes that’s right, it is time to douce your dried fruits in copious amounts of brandy and bake a sweet allergy safe treat for Christmas! This particular recipe will show you how to create a decadently rich fruit cake. It is so simple, and the secret is that you make it well in advance, so that it has 3-4 months to mature.
What is most marvellous about this rich fruit cake is the fact that it is free from:
- Suitable for coeliacs, vegetarians and vegans!
Christmas is all about celebrating with family and friends and we know that food is a big part. This recipe has the aim of being available and safe for everyone. (Non-allergy sufferers will not even know the difference!)
Gluten Free Vegan Christmas Cake Recipe – Nut Free, Egg Free, Dairy Free!
Slices: 10-20 (depends how big they are! But it is a rich fruit cake…)
- 6” round heavy loose bottomed cake tin
- Baking paper to completely line cake tin
- Plain brown packing paper
- Length of cotton string or twine more than double the circumference of the tin.
- Small saucepan
- Pastry brush
Brandy Soaked Fruits:
- 200g currents
- 75g sultanas
- 75g raisins
- 40g glace cherries, quartered
- 40g dried cranberries
- 40g mixed peel
- 50g dried apricots, chopped small
- 45g brandy (plus more for feeding the cake once cooked)
For the cake:
- 100g tapioca flour
- 200g rice flour
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/4 tsp mixed spice
- 110g dark brown sugar
- 1 tbsp black treacle
- 100g vegan margarine/100ml light olive oil
- 1/2 lemon rind
- 1/2 orange rind
- 200ml coconut milk
- 1 tsp gluten free baking powder
- 1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda
- 1 tbsp white wine/cider vinegar
- 2 tbsp apricot jam
- 2 tbsp brandy
- Dried and Glace Fruit (such as grace cherries, pineapple, apricot, orange slices, lemon slices etc)
- Brandy Soaked Fruits: Put all the dried fruits in a bowl with the brandy, cover and leave to soak overnight.
- The next day, preheat your oven to 140C. Grease and line the sides and bottom of a 6” round heavy loose bottom cake tin. Make sure the lined sides go up a couple inches past the top of the tin. You will also need a double thickness of brown paper and some cotton twine to tie around the outside of the cake tin and some baking paper folded in half and with a 50p piece size whole in the middle. (Why? The brown paper and baking paper covering is to stop the fruit cake from burning or becoming dry during its long baking time)
- In a mixing bowl add all the dry ingredients and mix until well incorporated. Make a well in the centre, then add all the wet ingredients. Beat until the cake batter is evenly mixed.
- Now add the brandy soaked fruit to the cake batter and mix until evenly distributed.
- Spoon the fruit cake batter into the cake tin and smooth the top, making it slope inwards slightly so that the cake will rise evenly.
- Now wrap the brown paper around the outside of the cake tin. Make sure that it covers the extra high baking paper used to line the cake tin. Use the twine to wrap around the brown paper covered tin and tie to hole in place. Now cover the top with the baking paper; make sure the hole is over the centre of the cake and that it is tucked into place.
- Put the cake on a shelf near the bottom of the oven and bake for 4 hours. (A Quick Tip: In a fan oven, sometimes the top baking paper cover can fly off. Use an extra oven shelf to hold it in place by positioning it above the cake so that it can hold the baking paper cover down.
- After 4 hours, check the cake is done by using a knife to pierce the centre of the cake. If the blade comes out clean the cake is cooked. If not, put back into the oven for another 20-30 minutes.
- Once cooked, take out of the oven and leave to cool in it’s tin until warm to touch. Once warm to touch, take the cake out of the tin and cool on a wire rack. *Leave the baking paper on the cake, this will help keep the cake moist over the coming months until Christmas.*
- Once the cake has cooled, use a kebab skewer to pierce holes in the the top of the cake. Now pour 2 tables spoons of brandy onto the cake. Let the brandy soak in. Once soaked in wrap the cake in baking paper paper, then foil and then cling film. Keep in a cool, dry and dark place, like the back of a cupboard.
- Every 2 weeks, feed your Christmas cake with a tablespoon of brandy until you are ready to serve the cake at Christmas!
- To decorate: You can decorate 2-4 weeks in advance if you would like. First make up the apricot glaze. Take a small saucepan, add the apricot jam and brandy and gently heat. While heating, stir until evenly mixed. Heat for approx 3 minutes, you don’t want to burn off the alcohol as this is what preserves the fruit cake.
- Take the baking paper from the sides of the cake and using a pastry brush, brush apricot glaze all over the top and the sides of the fruit cake. Now decorate the top of the cake with your dried and glace fruit. For any unglazed fruit, use your brush to cover with apricot glaze. This will make it all shiny!
- To store your cake for Christmas Day, wrap in cling film and put in a cool dry place away from sunlight. You might also want to put it in a cake box, just to make sure no one gets at it before Christmas!
- To serve, simply unwrap from the cling film and put on a presentation plate.
Serve up with some vegan brandy cream, ice cream or custard! Yum! I can’t wait for Christmas!
How do you make you Christmas Cake? Share your tips and tricks by leaving a note in the comments below!