Monday 15 December 2014

Christmas Ale Loaf Cake

Christmas Ale Loaf Cake
How cute is this tin!? This cake was inspired by a random bottle of Christmas ale that I found in the cupboard. I feared that it would never get drunk, so I emancipated it and turned it into something wonderful. I used a cocktail of festive spices to liven it up a bit, which made the house smell utterly heavenly! 

    Christmas Ale Loaf Cake
  • 100g sultanas
  • 1 spicy tea bag - I used Betty's Christmas tea, but a nice Assam or Chai would work.
  • 110g unsalted butter
  • 50g of vegetable fat 
  • 325g golden caster sugar
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 225g plain flour
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp lemon extract
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tsp ground ginger
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • 125ml Christmas ale (any beer really - although I must insist you stay from cacky yellow fizzy stuff)

  1. Grease and flour a large loaf pan (minimum 2lb) - I used the Nordic Ware Gingerbread Loaf tin. Only fill 3/4 full.
  2. Brew a strong cup of tea and discard the bag - do not add milk.
  3. Tip in the sultanas, cover with cling film and leave to soak. Leave these as long as you can.
  4. Soften the butter and vegetable fat and then cream in the sugar in stages.
  5. Add the eggs one at a time on a slow setting.
  6. Add all the remaining dry ingredients to a large bowl.
  7. Add the extracts to the beer.
  8. Sift in 1/3 of the dry ingredients, followed by 1/2 of the liquid. Repeat until all the flour and liquid is used up. Fold it in gently...
  9. Note: This will look a right curdled mess, however a bit of festive magic will rectify this... 
  10. Give the whole thing a quick whizz for about 10 seconds or until well combined. It will no longer look terrible.
  11. Drain the sultanas and pat dry with some kitchen roll. Dust with a little flour.
  12. Spoon 3/4 of the mix into the prepared tin then layer on the sultanas. 
  13. Spoon over the rest of the mix - this will stop all the sultanas sinking to the bottom! 
  14. Bake at gas 3/160 C for about an hour and fifteen minutes. Just turn it after about an hour.
  15. It should be shrinking from the sides and a skewer should come out clean.
  16. Let it cool in the tin for ten minutes then turn it out. 
  17. Allow to cool fully before decorating. I just used piped royal icing with a few sprinkles to accentuate the pretty design.

Bloggers: Please respect the fact I am sharing my own ideas and basic recipe. Blood, sweat and many tears have gone into getting this right, so you may enjoy a perfect bundt. If you wish to re-blog a recipe from these variations, please credit my blog and link to this original post rather than pasting the recipe on your own page.

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