recipes > Chocolate Christmas cake
A traditional Christmas cake with a bittersweet twist thanks to the rich addition of Dutch-processed cocoa and dark chocolate.
- 200g currants
- 200g sultanas
- 350g dark dried fruit, such as dried figs, prunes and sour cherries, diced
- 70g diced candied orange
- 200ml brandy or port
- 150ml orange juice
- 200g softened butter, coarsely chopped
- 185g brown sugar
- 3 eggs, at room temperature
- 150g dark couverture chocolate, coarsely chopped
- 1 1/4 cups plain flour
- 1 tablespoon Dutch-processed cocoa
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground mixed spice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- Icing sugar, optional, to serve
- Combine currants, sultanas, dark dried fruit, brandy or port, and orange juice in a large bowl. Stir to combine. Cover and stand overnight at room temperature, stirring occasionally, to macerate.
- Preheat oven to 150°C/130°C fan-forced. Grease a 22cm-diameter cake tin and line with two layers of baking paper.
- Beat the butter and sugar in an electric mixer for 2-3 minutes until light and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition (if the mixture curdles, add 1 tbs of the flour). Add the chocolate and macerated dried fruit mixture, then stir to combine.
- Sift in the flour, cocoa, baking powder and spices and gently stir to combine. Spoon batter into the prepared cake tin. Bake for 2 to 2 1/2 hours until a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean (cover the cake with foil if the top is getting too dark). Cool completely in tin on a wire rack.
- Wrap the cooled cake in a double layer of baking paper, then wrap tightly with foil and store at room temperature in an airtight container for up to 1 month. If desired, dust with icing sugar just before serving.
Tip: You can make the Christmas cake up to a month in advance (the flavours will develop over time). To keep it moist, you’ll need to pierce it with a skewer and ‘feed’ it once a week by drizzling with a little extra brandy or port. Tightly re-wrap the cake in between feeding.
Reserve Limestone Coast Shiraz
With a full-bodied palate and plum and spice notes, this Shiraz perfectly complements the Christmas spice and chocolate flavours in this cake.See more about this wine
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