Mini Dundee Cakes

1:49 am on 20 December 2008

These mini fruitcakes are based on an idea by Gary Rhodes. They smell wonderfully sweet while they're cooking, and taste fruity and buttery with an underlying alcoholic kick.

(Makes 12 small fruit cakes)

Ingredients

  • 175g butter, softened
  • 175g caster sugar
  • 3 large eggs at room temperature, beaten
  • 200g plain flour, sifted
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp ground mixed spice
  • 2 Tbs ground almonds
  • 175g currants
  • 175g sultanas
  • 50g glacé cherries, chopped
  • 50g chopped mixed peel
  • finely grated zest and juice 2 lemons
  • 3 Tbs brandy
  • 12 whole blanched almonds to decorate
  • optional: a decent drop of whiskey on the side

Method

1. Put butter in a bowl and beat with an electric beater until creamy and loose, then beat in caster sugar and beat until fluffy and lighter in colour. Beat eggs together with a fork, then add them gradually to the creamed butter and sugar.

2. Sift flour, baking powder and mixed spice onto a piece of paper, then sift them over the creamed mixture and fold in with a large spoon. Add ground almonds, dried fruit and glacé cherries, mixed peel, lemon zest and juice, and brandy. The mixture should have a softish dropping consistency; add a little milk if necessary.

3. Spoon into a 12-hole deep muffin tin lined with cupcake papers. Put an almond in the centre of each one. Cook for 25-30 minutes in an oven preheated to 170°C (regular), or until golden and smelling cooked. Cool in the tin.

The cakes are at their best served warm, but that's not to say they don't taste good a day or two after baking!

From Jesse Mulligan, 1–4pm

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