Folk tell me to keep busy, and do things that make me happy. It was only natural that I was going to reach for the Nordic Ware, mainly to show some appreciation to those who have been by my side, for which I am truly thankful. I feel a series of these coming on...
Within two minutes of arriving at my parents' house, I am guaranteed to have a brew in front of me, with some sort of sweet treat. These are usually in the form of half of Marks and Spencer's food hall, or those cute Mr Kipling types where two cakes come in a little wrapped box. You obviously have to eat both, thus preventing the second from becoming stale and rotting before your eyes (inevitably causing vermin).
Regular readers will already know that my dad and maternal grandad both share a love of a spiced fruit cake, so I've done many variations over the years. With this in mind, I decided to do a nod and a thank you to Mr Kipling* himself, and do my own variation of his Country Slice. I can't tell you just how much this tastes like the real thing! Smiles all round. And more brews.
- Preheat the oven to gas 3/160 c
- Prepare a regular sized bundt tin - 2.4l, 10 cup, 10 inch with melted butter and dust with flour.
- Cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.
- Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.
- Add the vanilla extract.
- In a separate bowl, measure out the flour, bicarbonate of soda, salt and spices.
- Stir the dried fruit into the four mix.
- Pour the yoghurt into a jug.
- Sift in a third of the flour mix followed by half the yoghurt. Repeat this until everything is combined.
- Note: your fruit will be left behind but covered in flour. This will stop them sinking! Boom...
- Stir the fruit into the mix.
- Give everything a quick mix on a low speed for about 10 seconds.
- Pour the mix into your prepared tin.
- Bake in the centre of the oven for about 1 hour 15 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.
- Leave the cake to cool for ten minutes before removing from the tin.
- When the cake is fully cool, warm your jam in the microwave until it's runny.
- Brush it onto the cake until it's covered and shiny...
- Sprinkle with sugar crystals.
* Okay okay, we all know he wasn't a real man, but you don't go telling kids that Santa doesn't exist, so keep your trap shut, you bloody killjoy (taking advantage of a sweary post).