Christmas in July is popular here in Australia, when during Winter we can pretend we are experiencing Christmas during the cold of Winter, just like in the Northern Hemisphere, and in some areas in the Southern States, it might even snow. This cake is perfect as a Christmas in July fruit cake, just add 1 tablespoon of Rum or Brandy, serve it with cream, mascarpone, or ice cream, and it would be a perfect dessert. I also love it eaten warm for morning or afternoon tea, sprinkled with icing sugar, which is how we ate it today. There's no need to add any extra spices to this recipe, as in a jar of fruit mince they've already been added. Spices like Cinnamon, Dill, Clove, Ginger, Nutmeg and a hint of Coriander, are already included in the Fruit Mince I used, and the smell of this cake cooking in the oven is just heavenly. The aroma filled the house. This cake only takes around 15 minutes to prepare, 50 minutes to cook, and doesn't require an electric mixer, so it is quick to put together and perfect to make on the day of eating. Tea cakes are best eaten on the day of baking. No problem in our house.
|Decorated with edible and colourful nasturtium petals from our garden
I used Robertson's Traditional Fruit Mince in a bottle, and I bought two large jars when they were on sale after Christmas. Using the bottled Fruit Mince makes this a very economical fruit cake to bake, as leading up to Christmas, dried fruits become very expensive to make a traditional Christmas Fruit cake, however I still make one every year. I love the tradition. If you make your own fruit mince it would be perfect in this cake.
2 cups (250 g) plain flour
1/2 cup (110 g) castor sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon bi-carbonate of soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 egg beaten
1/4 cup (65 ml) vegetable oil
1 tablespoon finely grated orange rind
2 tablespoons orange juice
2 cups Fruit Mince
1 tablespoon Rum or Brandy (optional)
Preparation: 10 minutes : Cook 50 minutes
Preheat oven to 180 degrees C. Grease and line your tin with baking paper, a 23 x 13 cm loaf tin, or use a 23 cm round tin.
Mix together the wet ingredients, the egg, oil, orange rind, juice and fruit mince, blending well.
Sift the flour with the baking powder, bi-carb of soda and salt into a bowl, and combine with the sugar, and add gradually to the egg mixture.
Mix until just moist.
Pour into the greased and lined tin.
Bake in your preheated moderate oven for 50 minutes, it might take a bit longer depending on your oven. When cooked, remove the cake from the oven, cool on a wire rack.
This is delicious to eat when still slightly warm.
And because it's Winter, I had a large pot of Chicken and vegetable stock, simmering away on the stove at the same time. Makes sense as I was hovering around the kitchen anyway. Chicken carcasses are such an economical way to make chicken stock, it's too expensive to buy a whole chicken these days for soup. I'll make the stock into Chicken and Vegetable Barley Soup tomorrow.