Saturday, December 24, 2011

Eggless Fruit cake / Vegan Christmas cake

Eggless Fruit cake / Vegen  Christmas cake

                    May the good times and treasures of the present become the golden memories of tomorrow. Wish you lots of love, joy and happiness. MERRY CHRISTMAS DEAR FRIENDS:)
                    Thanks Shilpa from Aayisrecipe for giving this vegan fruit cake. We all loved it and I had stuff time to retain some pieces for photos..It smelled heaven and the cake was so delicious.. Try out and you can find the magic ...
                  Before getting into the recipe, I would like to share some interesting info about the Christmas cake which I adapted from englishteastore dot com...
                   Christmas cake is an English tradition that began as plum porridge. People ate the porridge on Christmas Eve, using it to line their stomachs after a day of fasting. Soon dried fruit, spices and honey were added to the porridge mixture, and eventually it turned into Christmas pudding.
In the 16th century, oatmeal was removed from the original recipe, and butter, wheat flour and eggs were added. These ingredients helped hold the mixture together and in what resulted in a boiled plum cake. Richer families that had ovens began making fruit cakes with marzipan, an almond sugar paste, for Easter. For Christmas, they made a similar cake using seasonal dried fruit and spices. The spices represented the exotic eastern spices brought by the Wise Men. This cake became known as "Christmas cake."
                  
                 Christmas cakes are made many different ways, but generally they are variations on classic fruitcake. They can be light, dark, moist, dry, heavy, spongy, leavened, unleavened, etc. They are made in many different shapes, with frosting, glazing, a dusting of confectioner's sugar or plain.
               
                The traditional Scottish Christmas cake, also known as the Whisky Dundee, is very popular. It is a light crumbly cake with currants, raisins, cherries and Scotch whisky. Other types of Christmas cakes include an apple creme cake and a mincemeat cake. The apple creme cake is made with apples, other fruit, raisins, eggs, cream cheese and whipping cream. The mincemeat cake is made with traditional mincemeat or vegetarian mincemeat, flour, eggs, etc. It can also be steamed as a Christmas pudding.
                All Christmas cakes are made in advance. Many make them in November, keeping the cake upside down in an airtight container. A small amount of brandy, sherry or whisky is poured into holes in the cake every week until Christmas. This process is called “feeding” the cake.
In Japan Christmas cake is a frosted sponge cake with strawberries, chocolates or seasonal fruit.  

                In the Philippines,Christmas cake is a yellow pound cake with nuts or the traditional British fruitcake. Both cakes are soaked in brandy or rum, a palm sugar syrup and water. Rosewater or orange flower water is usually added. The cakes have a long shelf life, usually lasting many months. Sometimes they are eaten the following Easter or Christmas.
  Now lets start baking...
Eggless Fruit cake / Vegan  Christmas cake


Ingredients:
All purpose flour - 1 cup
Sugar - 1/2 cup + 1/4 cup
Butter - 7tbsp
Fresh orange juice - 3/4 cup
Vanilla extract - 1 tsp
Baking powder - 1/2 tsp
Baking soda - 1 tsp
Orange marmalade  or any mixed fruit jam - 2 tbsp
Dry fruits - 1/3 cup raisins
                    1/4 cup chopped prunes
                    1/2 cup chopped pecans
                    1/2 cup chopped cashews
                    1/2 cup tutti fruity
Spice powder – 2″ cinnamon + 4 green cardamoms + 5 cloves powdered
Salt - 1/4 tsp
Eggless Fruit cake / Vegen  Christmas cake

Method:

For Caramelizing..

  • Heat the heavy bottom pan in high heat and add 1/2 cup of sugar.
  • Make it even, do not stir in between and allow sugar turn to dark brown color. Reduce the heat. ( be careful otherwise,caramelize will burnt and become bitter.
  • Stay away and add 1/4 cup of water to the caramelized sugar.
  • Turn off the heat and allow it to cool.

Preparing cake batter:

  • Preheat the oven for 160C/350F for about 10mins. Line the baking pan with parchment paper or foil.
  • Grease it with butter and keep it aside.
  • Sieve together flour, baking powder, baking soda and keep it aside.



  • Take all the dry fruits in a bowl.  Add melted butter to the Dry fruits and mix well. (Meanwhile start preparing for caramelize sugar at this stage.)
  • Add caramelized sugar syrup to the fruit mixture and allow it to cool down.
  • When fruit mixture is warm, add orange marmalade, orange juice, 1/4 cup sugar and salt, spice mixture, vanilla and mix well.
  • Now add the dry ingredients to the fruit mixture, little by little and  mix gently with the spoon.
  • Pour the batter into the greased pan. Bake it at 350F for about 25-30mins or till a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
  • Cool it to room temperature and cut the cake or it will crumble easily. ( I did this mistake)
  • Enjoy with any frosting if you have the whole cake..
Note

  • There is a chance to sugar gets lumps up before it melt and liquid's. No panic, continue cooking over very low heat, stir as little as possible. You can little water to the caramelize sugar. Any stubborn lump can be strained out.
  • If you are using candy thermometer, sugar will get caramelize at 338 degree F but it doesn't worked for me..
  • Prepare the caramel sugar before I stated or keep the prepared caramel sugar pan in ice water to stop over cooking.
  • I add little bit water to my batter to give a loose consistency.
  • Baking time may vary depending upon your oven as well as the pan we are using. I used bread pan which took me an hour to cook my cake.
  • I added garam masala in place of spice powder.
  • Even cake is cooked, the inserted knife or toothpick will be mussy & stick due to the fruits in cake. So always rely on your nose and eyes which will judge perfectly.

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