Bridget Kavanagh's Christmas Cake
Guinness Christmas Cake and Pudding
2 lbs mixed dried fruit; 2 7 oz bottles Guinness; 12 oz butter; 12 oz brown sugar; 6 large eggs; 2 cups self raising flour; 2 teaspoons each cinnamon, mixed spice; one teaspoon nutmeg; grated rind and zest one lemon and one orange.
Empty the fruit into a large mixing bowl and pour the contents of the Guinness bottles over the fruit. Let it soak overnight in the fridge.
The next day, Warm the butter and sugar until both melt (but do not allow to overheat or you will have toffee!) Beat the six eggs while the sugar and butter mxcture cools. Stir eggs, and butter and sugar into fruit mixture. Sift flour and stir in spices. Stir flour into fruit mixture, add zest and rind of lemon and orange. ASt this point you can also stir in coins or charms.
Put half of mixture into lined and greased cake tin, and the other half into a boiling cloth or greased pudding bowl. Bake the cake at 180 degrees for 1 1/2-2 hours. It is done when a skewer inserted in the cake comes out clean. Boil the pudding for 1 1/2-2 hours, making sure you replenish the water. Let the cake and pudding mature for at least four weeks before eating.
Christmas celebrations have started at www.valeofavondale.com - all welcome!