This recipe is suitable for gluten free, grain free, dairy free and paleo diets and is only sweetened with dried fruit. It has been adapted from Teresa Cutter’s “Healthy Christmas Cake” recipe but has been given a boozy twist by soaking the dried fruit in a mix of brandy and whisky. Additional spices blend perfectly with the orange and the combination of dates, figs and raisins is heavenly. The cake is dense, moist and so full of flavour – the healthy makeover is just an added bonus!
200 gm dried figs, roughly chopped
200 gm pitted dates, roughly chopped
200 gm raisins
1/2 cup brandy or whiskey or a mix of both
2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
zest and juice of one orange
200 gm blanched almond meal
3 tbsp olive oil
65 gm walnuts, roughly chopped
Combined the dried fruit and the whiskey/brandy and allow to macerate for at least 4 hours in an airtight container.
Preheat oven to 150C. Line a 20cm round or square baking tin with baking paper.
In a large bowl, combine the dried fruit mixture, spices, vanilla, orange zest and juice, olive oil and eggs. Add the almond meal and walnuts and mix through. Spoon the batter into the prepared baking tin and bake for 1 hour or until a skewer comes out clean. If the top is browning too quickly, cover with foil.
Allow to cool before slicing. The cake is quite rich and dense so you should be able to get 16-20 serves out of it.