1 3/4 cups plain / all-purpose flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 cup (113g or 1 stick ) butter, softened
1/2 cup soft brown sugar
1 tablespoon dark jam (optional)
2 teaspoon vanilla essence
1 cup fruit mix, pre-soaked overnight or at least an hour before use
Pre-soaking the fruit mix:
- Place contents of a box of fruit mix into a container with a tight lid.
- Cut & squeeze one (1) orange.
- Pour the freshly squeezed orange juice into the fruit mix.
- Toss the fruit mix.
- Repeat tossing (just shake the container with the lid closed) every now and again so the fruits absorb the juice.
- Leave overnight.
- Preheat oven to 175ºC (350ºF). Grease two 8″ loaf pans. You can line the loaf pans with parchment paper if desired.
- Sieve the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder & soda) together. You can do this over a bowl or in a plastic bag
- Place the softened butter & brown sugar in a mixing bowl. Beat together till light & creamy.
- Add eggs, one at a time to the butter mix, beating after each addition.
- Add the vanilla essence & jam, if using.
- Now to add the flour & fruit mix, using slow speed or the ‘STIR’ speed of your mixer.
- Alternate between the flour & fruit mix being added in portions into the butter mix. This helps to even out the fruit in the batter.
- Pour half of the batter into each loaf pan.
- Bake for 40-60 minutes till cooked. Test if done with a skewer poked into the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean, it is cooked. If not, bake until done.
- Cool on baking rack.
- Fruit cake keeps well for at least a week in the fridge. Cover with aluminium foil before placing in the fridge if not consuming within the next few days.
- To give it a kick or keep it moist for longer, pour about 3 tablespoonsful of brandy or whiskey or a liquer over the top of the cake. Do this every few days.
- Or you can make this into a Christmas Fruit Cake (cupcake) for some holiday cheer.