I haven’t made a fruit cake for a while and looking through the remaining recipes I have left to bake, I can see there are quite a few, so I thought I should bake another one now!
Looking through the recipe this cake looked as though it would be very moist – pineapple and apricots were just two of the ingredients!
The oven was already on for the ‘Strawberry Shortbreads’ and luckily the temperature was the same – Fan 130°C. A 23cm (9″) deep round cake tin (yes I’ve been out and purchased one!!) was lightly greased and the base and sides lined with baking parchment.
A 227g can of pineapple (in natural juice) was drained. The pineapple was coarsely chopped and dried thoroughly on kitchen paper. 350g ready-to-eat apricots were then weighed out and these were snipped into small pieces and put into a bowl with the pineapple. The next ingredient to go in was 100g of whole blanched almonds which had also been coarsely chopped. These were mixed together and then 350g dried cranberries, 75g ground almonds, 350g sultanas and the finely grated rind of 2 lemons were also added and mixed in. I didn’t quite have 350g dried cranberries, so I made the weight up with cherries as Mary states at the top of the recipe to replace the dried cranberries with the same amount of cherries if you wished.
In another bowl I weighed out 250g self-raising flour, 250g caster sugar, 250g softened sugar and 5 large eggs. These were all beaten together until thoroughly mixed. The bowl of fruit and nuts were then added to this mixture and folded in. The mixture was spooned into the tin and the top levelled. I was just about to pop it into the oven when I realised the top had to be decorated with some blanched almonds. Luckily I had a few left over so a couple of concentric circles were put on the top before I popped it into the oven.
The cake was baked in the oven for 2 1/2 hours after which time it was golden brown on top. Mary does state that if your cake is browning to quickly then cover the top loosely with foil. The cake was starting to shrink away from the sides of the tin when I took it out of the oven and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake came out nice and clean, so hopefully the cake would be cooked. I left the cake in the tin to cool for approximately 30 minutes after which time I turned it out. Mary does say to leave the parchment in place and to finish cooling it on a wire rack. My parchment did start to fall off when I took it out of the tin, but I managed to wrap it back around again and left it to cool.
This cake like other fruit cakes improves on storing, but I think this one will be eaten fairly quickly so I removed the parchment and cut a slice. It was as I thought a very moist cake indeed. I personally liked the cake and especially the chunks of apricots inside. My husband liked it too, although I don’t think my daughter and son did.
I’m not sure if I’ll bake this again, perhaps I’ll give it a go with either the full amount of cranberries in or completely swap the cranberries for cherries. I think I’ve made better fruit cakes than this!