Glace Fruit Christmas Cake slice on its side on a plate

Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake

This Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake is ideal if you need a last minute Christmas cake or are looking for an alternative Christmas cake to the traditional rich fruit cake. It is also known as Light Christmas Cake but I really like to call it Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake.

I first made this cake when my daughter brought some glacé fruit back from her summer holiday in France. As Christmas approached I still had some left so I decided to use it. She liked it so much that I have made this cake every Christmas since.

Slice of Glace Fruit Christmas Cake on a holly and red berry decorated plate

Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake v Traditional Rich Fruit Christmas Cake

Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake differs from the traditional rich fruit Christmas cake in that it has a light creamy white crumb through which the colourful glacé fruits shine like jewels! In fact it is sometimes called a ‘Jewelled Christmas Cake’ and more generally referred to as ‘Light Christmas Cake’.

If you don’t like the heaviness of a traditional fruit cake then this cake works very well as an alternative Christmas cake.

It does not need to mature like a rich traditional Christmas cake so can be made nearer Christmas – an ideal last minute Christmas cake recipe. If you don’t have glacé fruits to hand you can always use different coloured glacé cherries.

Like all fruit cakes, however, it is better to keep it a few days before cutting, if you can wait that long!

Buying Glacé Fruit

Nowadays the supermarkets only seem to stock glacé cherries and cut mixed peel so I ordered most of my glacé fruit online this year. I used glacé cherries (I was able to get a selection of colours), crystallised pineapple, angelica and candied mixed peel. I was able to get whole pieces of candied peel online.

The other fruit I used was no soak dried apricots which are readily available in most supermarkets.

Ingredients you will need to make Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake

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  • 8 ounces / 225 grams no soak dried apricots
  • 3 tablespoons of brandy
  • 8 ounces / 225 grams crystallised pineapple
  • 6 ounces / 175 grams candied peel, either ready cut or whole pieces
  • 4 ounces / 115 grams angelica
  • 8 ounces / 225 grams glacé cherries
  • 8 ounces / 225 grams butter (softened)
  • 8 ounces / 225 grams caster sugar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 8 ounces / 225 grams plain flour
  • 2 ounces / 50 grams ground almonds

Directions

  1. Several hours before you make your cake, or the evening before, cut the dried apricots into smallish pieces (I use scissors) and put them in a small bowl with the brandy.
  2. Chop the glacé pineapple, candied peel and angelica into small pieces and quarter the glacé cherries.
  3. Grease and line a 9 inch / 23 cm cake tin with a double layer of baking parchment.
  4. Pre-heat your oven to 160°C / 140° fan / 325°F / Gas Mark 3.
  5. Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  6. Add the eggs one by one beating well with each addition.
  7. Fold in the flour and ground almonds.
  8. Fold in the brandy soaked apricots and the glacé fruits.
  9. Spoon your cake mixture into your prepared cake tin and smooth and level it out.
  10. Place in the pre-heated oven and cook for approximately 2½ hours. I cover it with a sheet of baking parchment for the first 2 hours of cooking to prevent over-browning. When cooked it should be a light golden brown and when pierced with a metal skewer it should come out clean. If any cake mixture sticks to the skewer cook for 10-15 minutes longer and test again.
  11. Once cooked leave in the tin until completely cold.
  12. When cold remove from the tin and peel off the lining papers. Wrap in baking parchment and store in an airtight tin until you are ready to use it.

Equipment you will need to make Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake

Along with the essential kitchen equipment you will need a 9 inch / 23 cm cake tin such as the Prestige Inspire Non Stick Round Cake Tin 23 cm with loose base, which you will need to double base layer with baking parchment paper and a metal skewer to test if the cake is cooked.

Glacé Fruit Christmas Cake

Recipe by Scones Plus More Course: SnacksCuisine: BritishDifficulty: Easy
Servings

10

servings
Prep time

20

minutes
Cooking time

2

hours 

30

minutes
Total time

2

hours 

50

minutes

Please note that before you make the cake you should ideally cut the dried apricots into smallish pieces and put them in a small bowl with the brandy the evening before, or for at least 3 hours.

Ingredients

  • 8 ounces / 225 grams no soak dried apricots

  • 3 tablespoons of brandy

  • 8 ounces / 225 grams crystallised pineapple

  • 6 ounces / 175 grams candied peel, either ready cut or whole pieces

  • 4 ounces / 115 grams angelica

  • 8 ounces / 225 grams glacé cherries

  • 8 ounces / 225 grams butter (softened)

  • 8 ounces / 225 grams caster sugar

  • 4 large eggs

  • 8 ounces / 225 grams plain flour

  • 2 ounces / 50 grams ground almonds

Directions

  • Several hours before you make your cake, or the evening before, cut the dried apricots into smallish pieces (I use scissors) and put them in a small bowl with the brandy.
  • Chop the glacé pineapple, candied peel and angelica into small pieces and quarter the glacé cherries.
  • Grease and line a 9 inch / 23 cm cake tin with a double layer of baking parchment.
  • Pre-heat your oven to 160°C / 140° fan / 325°F / Gas Mark 3.
  • Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Add the eggs one by one beating well with each addition.
  • Fold in the flour and ground almonds.
  • Fold in the brandy soaked apricots and the glacé fruits.
  • Spoon your cake mixture into your prepared cake tin and smooth and level it out.
  • Place in the pre-heated oven and cook for approximately 2½ hours. I cover it with a sheet of baking parchment for the first 2 hours of cooking to prevent over-browning. When cooked it should be a light golden brown and when pierced with a metal skewer it should come out clean. If any cake mixture sticks to the skewer cook for 10-15 minutes longer and test again.
  • Once cooked leave in the tin until completely cold.
  • When cold remove from the tin and peel off the lining papers. Wrap in baking parchment and store in an airtight tin until you are ready to use it.

Homemade Marzipan Icing

Next week I will be making homemade almond icing or marzipan icing, as I always ice a glacé fruit Christmas cake the traditional way with marzipan and royal icing. It would be equally good decorated with any remaining glacé fruit.

Also look out for my Royal Icing recipe.

Until then ‘Happy Baking’!

Tanya

3 Comments

  1. Sarah Hamilton

    Hello, I plan to make this for Christmas. I’m away between 19th and 23rd December. Would it be best if I make it before I leave on the 19th or when I come back on the 23rd December?

    • Hello Sarah,
      It would be best to make it before you leave. Wrap it in greaseproof paper and then in foil and then you won’t need to keep it in a tin. Keep it in a cool dry place but not in the fridge. When you are back you could then put the marzipan and royal icing on (if you are using or making those). After adding the marzipan it’s best to wait a day before adding the royal icing – it’s not essential to do this though, only if you have the time.
      Thank you for getting in touch and I hope it goes well.
      Tanya

  2. Sarah Hamilton

    Thank you!

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