Pre bake week ahead:
8oz (225g) Sultanas
6oz (170g) Dried apricots
4oz (110) Candied citrus peel (fine cut)
All soaked in Brandy (½ cup)
Rinse and check over fruit for any stalks etc. Put into a small bowl with brandy and cover, stir each day to plump up the fruit.
8oz (225g) Butter
8oz (225g)Golden caster sugar
4 Large eggs
8oz (225g) Plain flour
2 tsp Mixed spice
2oz (55g) Ground almonds
4oz (110g) Flaked almonds
Preheat oven 140c/120c Fan/275F/Gas Mark 1
Grease cake tin. I like using a round 7 x 4 inch tin and I add greaseproof paper all around and cut a piece for the top to stop overbrowning.
Cream the sugar and butter together, add the eggs one at a time and beat well. Fold in the flour and mixed spice. Pour any excess brandy juices into the cake mix and stir. Pour the ground almonds over the fruit and stir gently, coating the fruit. Finally fold the fruit and almonds into the cake mix and put into cake tin and into the oven.
The cake takes about 3 hours to cook but check after 1 hour and add your extra greaseproof top to stop the top from overbrowning, reduce oven temperature; 120c/100c Fan/250F/Gas Mark ½ . These cakes take longer to cook due to the height/depth of the cake. Cook until a skewer comes cleanly out.
Allow to cool and start ‘feeding’ with brandy. To do this prick over base with a fork, pour brandy over; about 2 tbsp on the top and the following week turn cake over and repeat. Feed cake like this at least a week apart and twice more before icing.