Lyudmila S from Flowwow

The best easy Christmas Cake recipes

19 December 171
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Christmas cake recipe

The origins of the Christmas cake trace back to mediaeval times, when dried fruits in combination with spices were utilised to make fruitcakes to mark special events. While the classic Christmas cake recipe differs from one region to another, it still remains one of the most popular choices worldwide. To enhance its flavour and extend its shelf life, the dessert might be infused with alcohol, such as brandy or rum.

Contemporary adaptations of the Christmas cake recipe have lost most of their complexities, allowing everyone to create this delectable dessert. Regardless of whether it's a decadent fruit-laden cake or a lighter sponge cake, the Christmas cake endures as a cherished holiday tradition, often adorned with sugary icing, whimsical marzipan, and festive designs to celebrate the festive spirit of Christmas. Let’s take a look at the best Christmas cake recipes to try out this year!

When should I start my Christmas cake

Christmas cake recipe uk

Ideally, a traditional Christmas cake is prepared approximately a month prior to Christmas, though some might opt for an even earlier start. This time frame ensures the cake has sufficient time to mature and enhance its flavours before the festive season commences. Moreover, giving yourself some extra time minimises the pressure of last-minute arrangements during the hectic holiday season. Therefore, the optimal period falls a few weeks to a couple of months before the celebration.

How many calories each serving contains

The conventional dessert typically carries a substantial calorie load, with an average serving containing approximately 350-400 calories. This is attributed to ‘heavy’ ingredients like butter, eggs, and dried fruits. In contrast, a vegan Christmas cake frequently boasts a lower calorie count per serving, averaging about 250-300 calories due to ‘healthier’ substitutes.

When it comes to petite Christmas cakes, the calorie content may fluctuate based on specific ingredients and portion dimensions. Regardless, opting for a smaller serving size generally results in a reduced calorie count, typically ranging from 200-250 calories per serving.

Traditional Christmas cake recipe

The Christmas cake recipe in the UK is a timeless and delightful indulgence ideal for the holiday season.

If seeking a traditional recipe for making a lasting impression on your guests, look no further than this straightforward Christmas cake recipe, a gem that has been handed down through generations, consistently bringing joy without fail.

Traditional christmas cake recipe

The method of preparing and cooking a cake

The method of cooking a traditional christmas cake

For a finishing touch, try moistening the cake with a couple of tablespoons of brandy every few days.

Small Christmas cake recipe

With its classic flavours and delightful aroma, this small Christmas cake is sure to bring joy and cheer to any holiday celebration.

Small christmas cake recipe

The method of preparing and cooking a cake

The method of cooking a small christmas cake

Once cooled, you can decorate the cake with a simple glaze or a dusting of powdered sugar and top it with a festive garnish of your choice.

Vegan Christmas cake recipe

Not only is this vegan Christmas cake incredibly tasty, but it is also cruelty-free, making it an excellent choice for enhancing your holiday dessert spread.

Vegan christmas cake recipe

The method of preparing and cooking a cake

The method of cooking a vegan christmas cake

Once your ingredients are ready, it’s time for the preparation process. Don’t forget to thoroughly mix the ingredients and spread the filling evenly across the batter.

Christmas cake icing recipes

Christmas cake icing recipes

The secret to a delectable Christmas cake lies in the impeccable icing, and there is a myriad of recipes to select from. Traditional royal icing provides the cake with a splendid, sleek surface and allows for intricate designs to infuse a festive flair. If you're in the mood for something slightly unconventional, consider a luxurious and velvety buttercream icing. For those inclined toward a lighter and fluffier topping, the whipped cream icing stands out as an excellent option.

Regardless of the icing chosen for your Christmas cake, ensure it has ample time to set and thoroughly dry before serving, as this step preserves the cake's moisture and maintains its visual appeal.

What does the Christmas cake go well with?

The Christmas cake is a decadent and lavish dessert that complements a variety of side dishes. Traditionally, a serving of Christmas cake is presented with a dollop of softly whipped cream or a portion of sharp cheddar cheese, which serve as elements that cut through the richness of the cake. Alternatively, a steaming cup of spiced mulled wine or a warm mug of freshly brewed coffee also stands out as popular choices. Finally, for a more indulgent pairing, a scoop of velvety vanilla ice cream or a drizzle of luscious caramel sauce serves as delightful enhancements that elevate the cake's flavours.

Christmas Cake Decoration Ideas

Best christmas cakes in uk

When it comes to adorning a Christmas cake, the opportunities are boundless. Some popular suggestions involve employing traditional Christmas hues like red, green, and gold for both icing and edible embellishments. Alternatively, you can craft a wintry spectacle featuring trees dusted with snow, a miniature snowman, and perhaps even a tiny Santa Claus. Another choice is to include festive patterns such as holly leaves and berries, candy canes, or gingerbread figures. 

For a contemporary touch, experimenting with metallic edible paints or glitter can infuse your cake with a captivating shimmer. Regardless of your preferred style, the essential element is to enjoy the process and allow your creativity to flourish when decorating your Christmas cake.

Suggestions for Preserving Your Christmas Cake

Always let your dessert cool down completely as it lets the extra moisture evaporate. It’s a great idea to tightly wrap the cake with parchment or wax paper, as well as aluminium foil, especially if you are going to place it in the freezer. Finally, put the wrapped dessert in a resealable plastic bag or an airtight container, and it’s ready to stay in your freezer for approximately three months without losing its flavour or texture. Before enjoying it, simply let the cake thaw in its wrapping at room temperature for a few hours. 

For shorter storage periods, place your dessert in a cool, dry place like a pantry or cupboard. By following these simple steps, your Christmas cake will be a delight for you and your loved ones for weeks or even months to come.

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FAQ

What is the difference between a fruit cake and a Christmas cake?

Fruit cake is a general term encompassing any sponge dessert with a substantial amount of dried fruits and nuts. It can be eaten throughout the year, which means it’s not exclusively linked to the Christmas season. Conversely, a Christmas cake specifically denotes a type of fruit cake prepared and enjoyed specifically during the festive period. These desserts are commonly infused with alcohol and adorned with layers of decor, rendering them a more opulent and festive delicacy.

How long do you need to soak fruit for a Christmas cake?

For crafting a Christmas cake, it is advisable to steep the fruit in alcohol for a minimum of 24 hours – ideally, for up to a week. The extended soaking time intensifies the flavour imparted to the final cake.

How long before Christmas should I marzipan my cake?

The optimal time to marzipan your dessert is around 2-3 weeks before the significant day. Marzipanning too long before the event might lead to excessive drying or hardness. Alternatively, if done too close to the date, there may not be adequate time for the flavours to fully mature.

What is the best alcohol for Christmas cake?

Brandу or rum is typically considered the ideal choice. Whatever your preference, adding a generous portion is a must for creating a delicious and delicate treat.

How often should I put brandy on my Christmas cake?

A common suggestion is to regularly ‘feed’ your Christmas cake with brandy each week leading up to Christmas. This process entails using a skewer to create small holes in the cake and then drizzling a modest amount of brandy over them to maintain moisture and enhance flavour. Nevertheless, some individuals opt to soak the entire cake in brandy at once and allow it to rest for a few weeks before serving.

Does alcohol in a Christmas cake cook off?

Indeed, a certain amount of alcohol does evaporate during the baking process of a Christmas cake. It’s the elevated temperatures during baking that cause some of the alcohol to dissipate. There might still be some residual alcohol present in the cake. Therefore, individuals sensitive to alcohol or those abstaining from it for health or religious reasons are advised to refrain from consuming Christmas cake containing alcohol.

What can I use instead of alcohol in a Christmas cake?

For those seeking a non-alcoholic option for Christmas cake, fruit juice or apple cider can be employed as a replacement for rum or brandy. Orange juice, apple juice, or even pineapple juice can impart a pleasant flavour to the cake without the inclusion of alcohol. Alternatively, using a flavoured extract, such as almond or vanilla, can provide the cake with a subtle touch of festive flavour.

Do I leave my Christmas cake in the tin to cool?

Certainly, it is advisable to allow your Christmas cake to cool in the tin. Post-baking, the cake requires time to solidify and maintain its structure. Extracting it from the tin prematurely may result in collapse or breakage. Once the cake has fully cooled, you can take it out of the tin and either wrap it in parchment paper for storage or proceed to decorate it with icing before serving it to your guests.

Can you put fondant icing straight onto marzipan?

It is definitely acceptable to directly apply fondant icing onto marzipan. In the realm of cake decorating, it is a widespread technique to utilise marzipan as an underlying layer for fondant. The marzipan serves as a sleek and robust surface, allowing the fondant to stick seamlessly and produce a polished top layer on the cake.
Lyudmila S from Flowwow