Last time on Beach Hut Cook, I shared with you my take on a stress-free festive family gathering by taking the whole event outside and hosting a Winter Woodland Picnic. So, here’s the final recipe – Buttermilk Fruit Cake.
This cake recipe doubles up as not only as a great way to end a winter picnic but as a fab last minute Christmas cake. I never seem to get my act together until a week before Christmas when I become every retailers’ dream as I dash/rush about buying way too much of everything and closing my eyes and crossing my fingers at the checkout to see if my bank card has been accepted. So if that is also you, then this cake can be made literally at last minute and yet taste like you’re super organised and planned the whole thing months ago.
I wish you a very merry Winter Picnic.
Buttermilk Fruit Cake (serves 16 easy)
455g plain flour
225g butter-like spread
225g brown sugar, any will do
500g mixed dried fruit, ready mixed or mix your own using apricots, dates, sultanas
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon mixed spice
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 sachet of mulled wine spice, optional
284ml carton buttermilk
1 tablespoon black treacle
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
Preheat oven to 180°C/Gas Mark 4/350F. Prepare a 23cm cake tin, greased and lined.
Rub the spread into the flour until crumbly. Stir in the sugar, fruit mix, ground cinnamon, mixed spice, ground ginger and contents of the mulled wine spice if using (I had one in the house that needing using up but works well without).
In a saucepan, gently warm the buttermilk but do not bring to the boil. Remove from the heat and stir in the treacle and finally the bicarbonate of soda. This will start to froth and then immediately add to the flour mix. Stir until well mixed.
Pour into the prepared cake tin and bake for 40-50 minutes until firm to the touch. Cover with foil towards the end of cooking if the fruit starts to burn.