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3 Ingredient Fruit Cake

Posted by Heather F 
3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 01, 2016 10:20AM
I've been making this as my Christmas cake for 7 - 8 years now, except it's a bit more than 3 ingredients lol, as I add 2 - 3 essences, plus ginger, cinnamon and mixed spice. I find it lovely and moist, and of course no added butter, sugar or eggs.
I use either tropical or breakfast juice to soak the fruit, and I saw on a version that uses iced coffee as the soaking liquid. It doesn't appeal to me, but I wondered if anyone has ever tried it, and if so, what it was like?
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 02, 2016 08:59AM
That sounds like an interesting cake Heather,can you share your recipe please?
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 02, 2016 10:06AM
Hi Marylew - apparently it's a recipe that's been around forever (maybe it started life as one of those austerity recipes),but I only came across it somewhere 7 or so years ago.

So in it's plainest form, you soak 1 kg of mixed dried fruit in 2 c fruit juice overnight, then next day add 2 c self-raising flour, mix it thoroughly and bake. Sounds like it's not going to be good, but I've made it many times and it's yummy. I think it might keep, but it gets munched through fairly quickly here so I've never found that out!
I think of all the years of creaming huge amounts of butter and brown sugar together, plus all the eggs, in a traditional Christmas cake, when I could have been making this one lol. It's not as rich as one made with lots of eggs/butter/sugar, but I don't mind that.

With my version of it, I add a packet of glace cherries as part of the one kg of fruit, and also a small 70g pk of slivered almonds, though I don't add the almonds until the next day when I'm mixing in the flour as I've found they lose a bit of their crunch.
I also add a scant teaspoon each of cinnamon and ground ginger, and a half tsp of mixed spice, with the flour, plus a capful of vanilla extract, and a capful of whatever other essence I might have. I can imagine some of the juice could be replaced by a liqueur, or whisky, port etc. And the juice really does need to be something like tropical or breakfast. I did make it once with unsweetened orange juice and it was a bit of a disaster as it needs the sweetness from the juice. And I have seen a variation where the liquid is ginger ale. I think it's one of those amazing recipes where you can make lots of changes to suit your own family's tastes, while keeping the proportions the same, and it works out.

To bake, I double line my cake tin and bake at about 180'C (not fan forced), for approx 2 hours, or until a skewer comes out clean, but I've found different oven temps and times can vary a lot, and you need to check it's not browning too much.
I let it cool completely in the tin then wrap it in foil and then plastic wrap and pop it in the freezer. You can't leave a fruit cake stored in a dark cupboard here in Oz as it would dry out too fast.
I get it out of the freezer a week before Christmas, poke holes in it with a skewer, and give it several drinks of brandy or whisky over the week. You don't have to do that as it's nearly as nice without.

Perhaps I should call it 3 Ingredient-ish Fruit Cake grinning smiley
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 02, 2016 08:32PM
I also make this cake but for my liquid I use brandy. And then when it comes out of the oven I pour a lid of brandy over the cake, and then continue to do so weekly until Xmas. I haven't made one this year - but usually make it at the end of October and it lasts well.

Huge confession time here - I still have half of last year's cake. And it is perfect and still lovely and moist, which I think is due to the brandy. I have a chocolate truffle recipe using left over Xmas cake, and I think that is what I will do with these leftovers.

And with regards the copious amounts of brandy - is it overpowering? Definitely not. I had slices on the table last year one evening, when various friends were scheduled to see our Xmas lights. One friend was devouring it and saying how beautiful and moist it was - and only then I remembered she is totally teetotal!! I didn't say anything and just thought oops smiling smiley

Edited to add - I never have SR Flour in the house, so I use plain flour and 2 tspns of baking powder

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 11/02/2016 08:35PM by Irene Field.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 02, 2016 10:43PM
I found a recipe the other day on the Net - basically the same as the above one, but cooked in a slow cooker. Being the lazy cook that I am, I thought I might try it this year.

Shall report back on its success or otherwise.

Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 03, 2016 09:36PM
Thanks Heather will try that recipe.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 04, 2016 10:21AM
Look forward to hearing what you think Marylew! And Margaret - have never been game to try any sort of cake in the slow cooker so will be interested to see how it turns out.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 04, 2016 01:13PM
Heather, any idea of tin size please.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 04, 2016 01:38PM
Hi Heather
I too have been successfully making this cake over the past many years (must be over 12 years ) & have tried all sorts of options. Have made it using iced coffee & also chocolate milk (which won the vote from the taste testers). Have used all sorts of juices including pineapple juice which is popular & a good pure orange which I make for a diabetic friend who delights as he can finally enjoy a sugar free version of fruit cake. I've done the brandy version but equally successful (& cheaper) with cream sherry or green ginger wine (this added a lovely flavour twist). Also used ginger ale or L&P.
It's a great keeper, had my mum house sitting & when we come home she commented on the fab cake I had left for her. I enquired what tin she had got it from & discovered it was in a tin that must have been from 2 Christmases prior! I was horrified (especially to think I had a tin that I hadn't looked in that long...) & did confess to her. She thought it was delicious.
You have got me thinking now as I usually make between 12 to 18 every Christmas as gifts, might be time to get them under way. SallyH
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 04, 2016 09:46PM
I too have made it with chocolate milk as the liquid and everyone raved about it.
I may have to make it again this year as am off to visit my parents before Christmas and Dad loves fruit cake.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 05, 2016 05:52AM
Hi ValM - sorry, I should have said I used a 22.5 cm round tin.

SallyH - mmm I think I'd like it with the green ginger wine. Just not sure about the flavoured milk version - I am really not a milk drinker though, so it's the thought of it more than anything.
And making 12 - 18 Christmas cakes! I thought I was going well with just making 2 lol!
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 05, 2016 01:32PM
Sally H your christmas cake made with orange juice is very far from sugar free. Orange juice (yes even pure orange juice) is full of naturally occurring sugar, diabetics are advised not to eat too much fruit for this reason.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 05, 2016 09:49PM
Hi Griz, thanks for that & (great point) I did always make it clear to him what was in it ( including giving him the packaging the first year ) but he said it was ok for him. At 86 years old I wasn't about to disagree with him!
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 06, 2016 06:45AM
At 86 he can eat what he wants! Just wanted to be sure that you realised there is indeed sugar in the recipe, it amazes me the number of people who think fruit juice is a healthy option!
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 06, 2016 09:13AM
And indeed dried fruit = sugar of course........Diabetes NZ has a fruit cake on their website (a lot more ingredients than 3-ingredient fruit cake though...but theirs also includes orange juice....and dried fruit of course...) which they say to cut into 100 PIECES eye popping smiley eye popping smiley and limit your diabetic self to one piece per meal/snack. Can you imagine the crumbs, cutting all those little 1cm by 4cm pieces.....and oh so looking forward to a delicious slice of fruit cake...uh....well.....ohhhhh....okay....a wee little one bite piece then....something like having your cake but not eating it....or at least taking 100 days to do so.....
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 06, 2016 09:26AM
I really need a like button for that post J1.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 06, 2016 11:13AM
Me too, Griz. I think I'd get more enjoyment out of eating 3 sultanas, preferably pre-soaked in rum, one at a time.

I agree that at 86 he can eat what he wants, never mind the bran and kale muffins (unless he really wants to). If he has made it to 86 he must have done something right.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 06, 2016 09:51PM
He's probably taking the diabetic drug metformin which has been proven to have anti-aging properties.
Re: 3 Ingredient Fruit Cake
November 07, 2016 01:36AM
Yes life is made to be enjoyed!
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