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Making the Christmas Cake

(73 Posts)
suziewoozie Mon 26-Oct-20 13:32:53

DH started his preparations for making this year’s cake. The first time for 8 years without a dgc helping out. I feel a bit sad.

midgey Mon 26-Oct-20 13:37:08

Oh dear, is that due to Covid or GD age?

suziewoozie Mon 26-Oct-20 13:40:28

We are social distancing with them so it wouldn’t be practical - however, we are giving them theirs on Wednesday along with the brandy and putting them in charge of the weekly feeds.

Iam64 Mon 26-Oct-20 13:41:58

I've just printed off the Mary Berry Christmas cake recipe. I usually do either Delia or a Cranks recipe from many years ago.

I usually make the cake at half term, those children are about 20 years away from the happy days when we did it together. Last year, I bought a cake from Betty's because it seemed crazy to make a huge cake when we have no greedy children regularly slicing chunks for themselves and their pals. The non home made cake was such disappointment so - I'm off to order the ingredients.
Which recipe suziewoozie

B9exchange Mon 26-Oct-20 13:44:29

That's a brilliant idea, we have two grandchildren on Wednesday, they can make my Christmas cake!

Suzy, even if you are social distancing, could they not stir it?

suziewoozie Mon 26-Oct-20 14:03:39

Iam Delia’s
B9 we actually hadn’t considered that at all - I’ll have a think about the logistics of a partial helping. Thanks

Ilovecheese Mon 26-Oct-20 14:10:54

Mine is in the oven now. I use a very old Woman's Weekly recipe called a cake -ometer, it gives the different amounts of ingredients for the different sizes of cake. I do tinker with it a bit though. Nowadays I make the smallest size and I admit I felt a bit sad. My friend and I used to make one together at half term when our children were small. I still make it at half term and think of her every time

craftyone Tue 27-Oct-20 18:11:21

Mary Berry 6" cake. It has dried fruit soaked in brandy and I have fed it brandy once, it will be well and truly sozzling by the time the season arrives as I will be feeding at every week. I am only going to pop some lovely good marzipan on top and it will last me ages through winter. It too reminds me of christmases past

Oopsadaisy4 Tue 27-Oct-20 18:17:42

For the first time in many years DD2 and the GCs arent able to be here to make the cake. GS has to isolate as his school friend has Covid. TBH I’m just trying not to dwell on it.

PECS Tue 27-Oct-20 18:27:33

Well I have got my fruit soaking on the kitchen worktop and depending on what time DGDs arrive on Thursday they can help me make them..otherwise i will do them on Friday. I make for my DH&I (visitors too if we were having any!) one for my brother who eats GF, and one for DGDs' dad's birthday in November.
Delia's recipe here.

Iam64 Tue 27-Oct-20 18:32:56

Crafty, I’m doing the 9” mary berry. The dried fruit is sizzling away. It will probably see us through till the Simnel cake if we stay in tier 3. Alternatively, maybe we will be driven to chunks of cheese with the cake late afternoon, possibly feeding ourselves brandy as the cake won’t takr any more

PECS Tue 27-Oct-20 18:36:10

Iam64 I must not forget the Wensleydale cheese to go with my cake on Christmas Day!

Whitewavemark2 Tue 27-Oct-20 18:47:26

I wonder if I could make it with gluten free flour?

PECS Tue 27-Oct-20 20:52:16

Yes I just substitute GF flour. I add xanthum gum too & it works fine.

craftyone Wed 28-Oct-20 07:53:26

Iam64, I was delighted to see the multi-sized list of ingredients in her cake book. I would not have made a bigger cake as it is just for me and I conveniently had all the ingredients and the cake tin. The brandy will preserve it perfectly for months. I love a tiny piece of christmas cake with a good tasty cup of tea when it is snowing outside. First time in 5 years I have made a christmas cake, I used to make one every year before I was widowed

Vickysponge Wed 28-Oct-20 08:06:14


I wonder if I could make it with gluten free flour?

I am coeliac and I make all my Christmas cakes with Doves gluten free flour. I do the nigella Lawson Christmas cake but I have made Delia’s. All work with gluten free flour.

Whitewavemark2 Wed 28-Oct-20 12:11:18

Thank you all. Before I understood I was gluten intolerant, I always used to make my own Christmas cake, and delicious it was!

I have made it once using gf flour and it turned out like bread pudding! So have bought it ever since, but honestly it isn’t so nice as home made. I have actually bought a gf Christmas cake small but am thinking of making my own.

grandtanteJE65 Wed 28-Oct-20 12:21:55

Oh, how I would love a slice come Christmas. DH refuses to eat anything with raisins and currants in it, like nearly all Danes, so I haven't had a piece of Christmas cake since my aunt died. She always made one, and even although it wasn't particularly good, it was Christmas cake.

I miss Christmas pudding and mince pies too, for the same reason, although I did still have both when my father and sister were alive to share them. Come to think of it, I 'm better of without the Christmas pud. I won't enjoy it without them.

Iam64 Wed 28-Oct-20 17:32:40

crafty, good to hear you're making yourself a cake. Your comment that its five years since you were widowed made me think of my sister and a very close friend, both widowed in the past year. I hope you enjoy the baking and especially, the eating. A small piece with a good cup of tea about 4 pm is perfect. The recipe looks straight forward and when I googled 'best Christmas cake recipe' , Mary Berry topped the list.

craftyone Wed 28-Oct-20 17:41:33

Iam64, the first year, I was desperate for someone to tell me it would get better, so I sat behind 2 older women on the bus, I was guessing they were widows and I asked them. They said that I would learn to live with it and its very true. Tell your sister and friend that there are stages and the final stage is when one is ready to make a new life. That happened to me, exactly that. There is no time limit, everyone is different. New house, new friends and a christmas cake smile

Callistemon Wed 28-Oct-20 17:47:46


I wonder if I could make it with gluten free flour?

It may need extra liquid, Whitewave

Callistemon Wed 28-Oct-20 17:51:03

I sometimes make Delia's and last year I made Mary Berry's Victorian cake(s).
One year I made Jamaican Black Cakes which I really liked but DH wasn't so keen.

I need some help from DGC but we're locked down.

Grandma70s Wed 28-Oct-20 17:57:09

My son has made the cake from my mother’s handwritten recipe. It includes an instruction to listen to the cake. If it hisses, it’s not quite cooked.

MawB2 Wed 28-Oct-20 17:58:56

Baking a Christmas cake is definitely much more than just baking cake!
Paw died 6 weeks before Christmas and clearly all the family’s Christmas plans were turned on their head. DD1 decided she would have everybody to hers and I was deputed you bake the cake,
Now I knew for a fact that many of us didn’t actually like. Christmas cake all that much, (but Paw did ) so I gave it my best shot and was pretty pleased with the result.
It was of course simply a cunning plan “to keep mum busy” bless them

PECS Wed 28-Oct-20 18:35:32

I agree Maw Christmas cake, for me, epitomises a traditional Christmas. The cake and the Christmas tree decorated on Christmas Eve. Conjures up warm and happy times with my childhood family as well as my adult family.