So I kind of missed Stir It Up Sunday this year. I really do not know where the weeks have gone to be honest. The weekend that this date took place, I was still recovering from all the preparation I did for the school Christmas fayre, and on the Sunday itself I had family down for a meal and I just ran out of time!
Anyway, not one to worry too much about days with fancy names I had my own Stir It Up Monday earlier this week after school instead. The boys could not wait to help me and each had a stir and made a wish.
I decided to make a Christmas cake instead of a pudding for a change, and knowing that sometimes Christmas Cake made in a traditional way is not always a winner for some people. I thought I would make a chocolate version. My recipe is inspired by one that Nigella created, but I changed some of the ingredients, added some morello cherries, Baileys instead of Tia Maria and covered mine in chocolate icing, whereas she leaves her un-iced. I also added some Thorntons dark chocolate covered cherry truffles to finish it off.
Here is my Chocolate & Cherry Christmas Cake
- 400g glace morello cherries
- 150g raisins
- 150g currants
- 75g dried apricots, cut into 4 pieces
- 100g chocolate drops
- 175 g soft unsalted butter
- 175 g dark muscovado sugar
- 175 ml runny honey
- 125 ml Baileys Irish Cream
- Juice and zest of 2 oranges
- 1 teaspoon mixed spice
- 4 tbsp cocoa powder
- 3 large eggs beaten
- 150g self raising flour
- 75g flaked almonds
- 50g ground hazelnuts
- Black cherry jam - 1 tbsp approx
- 500g Renshaws chocolate flavoured icing
- 1 packet of Thorntons dark chocolate covered cherry truffles.
- Pre heat the oven to 150C / 130oC (fan)
- Grease and line an 8 inch loose bottomed cake tin - ensure that the grease proof paper comes up the sides of the tin
- Put the fruit, butter, sugar, Baileys, runny honey, orange Zest and juice, mixed spice and cocoa powder into a large saucepan.
- Bring to the boil gently, stirring all the time and then allow to simmer for 15 minutes.
- Remove from the heat and leave to cool for 30 minutes.
- After at least 30 minutes, add all of the remaining ingredients, and stir to combine.
- Pour the fruit cake mixture into the prepared cake tin.
- Place in the oven and bake for 100-120 minutes, until the cake is cooked all the way through, but you still want it to be a little gooey in the middle.
- Leave to cool and then carefully remove from the tin.
- Once cooled you can ice your cake
- Roll out the icing large enough to cover the entire cake
- Cover the cake in the cherry jam (I melted my jam to make a sauce)
- Place the icing over the cake and smooth over,
- trim off any excess of the icing
- Top with the truffles
- I also added some festive ribbon to cover up the blemishes!
- Keep in a airtight tin and it should keep as a normal Christmas cake does *fingers crossed*
I have no idea how this cake tastes as yet because it has not been cut into! I am actually thinking of giving it away to Jenson’s pre school for their Christmas coffee morning the week after next, so fingers crossed it will taste nice!!!
I was sent a selection of ingredients from Aldi with which to make a Christmas pudding or cake with as part of the Stir It Up Sunday tradition. Thank you Aldi for helping me to make such a great cake for Christmas!