Spicy, moist, gluten free cakes
Tutti Fruity Christmas Cakes
You either love a fruit cake or you don’t. I’m not much of a fan of marzipan and thick icing, way too sweet for me, but I do love all those Christmasy mulled wine type spices, so I try to recreate that in this cake.
I want a healthier version of a Christmas cake that’s moister, more spicy and one where you’ll have one bite and go wow.
These cakes use gluten free flour – buckwheat and gf oat – both flours work well mixed together, half and half, or use just one of them. It simply depends what you have in your cupboard, or what’s available to you. Both are a healthier choice than the readymade gluten free white flours from the shops as those don’t contain nearly as much fibre. If you don’t need to be gluten free then use good quality spelt or wholemeal wheat flour.
This cake is much lower in sugar than regular cakes, especially shop bought cakes, but with all that juicy dried fruit and spice flavour going on you’ll barely need any sugar at all.
The other thing I love about this cake is it can all be made in the one pan. Using a large saucepan at the start it transforms into the mixing bowl once the fruit mixture has cooled. Makes life easier.
I sometimes stir through a couple of tablespoons of whiskey or brandy into the mixture before baking!
So here it is, the heathy Christmas cake that you’re going to love.
Tutti Fruity Christmas Cakes
Makes about 20 small cupcake sized cakes or one large 25cm diameter cake
Oven set to 180°C
What’s In Them:
370g (2 cups) raisins (sulphur dioxide free)
340g (2 cups) sultanas (sulphur dioxide free)
150g (1 cup) currants (sulphur dioxide free)
165g (1 cup) coconut sugar or dark brown sugar
11g (2 tsp) bicarb soda
650mls (3 cups) water
6 heaped tsp ground mixed spice such as cloves, cinnamon, nutmeg or Chinese five spice, plus optional zest and juice from 1 organic orange
300mls extra virgin olive oil
4 eggs, lightly mixed
320g (2 cups) buckwheat flour or mixed buckwheat/GF oat flour
2 tsp baking powder (optional, it depends how dense you like your fruit cakes)
How To Make:
Place the dried fruit, sugar, bicarbonate of soda and water into a large saucepan and bring to boil. You’ll need a largish saucepan as the mixture foams up a bit.
Once boiling turn down to a simmer, and cook for a couple of minutes or until the sugar has dissolved. Then turn off the heat.
Add the mixed spice (plus orange if using), stirring through, and leave to cool to room temperature.
Once cooled a bit, stir through the eggs and oil, mixing them in well. (Add the brandy/whiskey at this point if using).
Fold in the flour and baking powder, taking care not to over mix everything together at this stage.
Pour the mixture out into individual cake paper cups or muffin pans. Alternatively line a large cake tin (approx. 25cm diameter) with baking paper and make one whole cake.
Place the cake/s into an oven set at 180°C. If making the smaller individual cakes then bake for approximately 20 minutes, or until a cake skewer comes out clean from the cake.
For one large cake, bake for 45 minutes, test if it is done, then bake on if not for another 10 minutes, then test again.
I like to decorate the cakes with edible silver baubles and a smidgen of icing sugar; Get creative here, the cakes taste brilliant, so make them look fantastic and festive too!
Please tell me how you go! And do share your cakes on social media and tag me in @emmas_nutrition or use the hashtag #emmasnutrition so I can see them, thanks.
Happy Christmas x