As a five-year-old child peeking at the turkey in the oven, I proudly stated to my grandfather that we were roasting a ‘hoo hoo’.
Today, Christmas lunch is a much more modest event, but a tradition we still keep is that my grandmother and I bake fruit cakes to give to family and friends.
We go through 2kg of glacé cherries and make about 10 cakes. Most of the preserves are home-made by my grandmother during the year.
She and I have always done the cakes on our own together, while remembering how she pulled off the feat of serving 60 guests, and laughing at the five-year-old me thinking a turkey goes ‘hoo hoo’. – Vian Roos, FW art director
Makes a 30mm round cake
Ingredients for a light fruit cake:
- 250g butter
- 200g sugar
- 5 eggs
- 5ml vanilla
- 25ml brandy
- 500g cake flour
- 10ml baking powder
- 2ml salt250g glacé cherries (halved)
- 50g pecan nuts (chopped)
- 250g light sultana raisins
- 50g ginger preserve (cut to the same size as the halved cherries)
- 100g melon preserve (cut to the same size as the halved cherries)
- 150g preserved citrus rind
- Cream together the sugar and butter.
- Add the eggs one by one, mixing continuously.
- Add the vanilla and brandy after all the eggs have been added. Mix well.
- Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt before adding to the butter-sugar mixture.
- Mix the dry ingredients in well.
- Add the preserved fruit to the rest of the batter. Mix everything well until the fruit is distributed evenly throughout the batter.
- Bake for three hours at 160°C in a round pan.
- 50ml butter
- 200ml sugar
- 25ml brandy
- 2 eggs (separated)
- 125ml cream
- Mix the butter and 100ml of the sugar until creamy, then gradually incorporate the brandy.
- Whisk the egg whites until stiff peaks form, while adding the rest of the sugar.
- Whisk the yolks separately and then mix in the cream.
- Add the butter and sugar mixture to the cream and yolk mixture, and mix well.
- Heat the sauce mixture over a double burner until it starts to thicken to the consistency of custard.
- Finally, fold the egg white mixture into the sauce.