25 August 2019

Our Wedding Cake Recipe


Our Wedding Cake Recipe - Maggie May

It was early on during our wedding planning that Mama Maggie May and I casually suggested having a go at baking mine and Mr MM's wedding cake.

The initial plan was to bake a simple, one-tier fruit cake, to be decorated with flowers - as our friends were baking a selection of goodies for our 'Great Wedding Bake Off', we figured there would be enough cake around.

But before long, the plan changed to a two-tier cake - and then three...

Mama MM and I started off by trying out a few different fruit cake recipes, exchanging them at weekends to try bites of each others and decide which elements we liked in particular. It was a fairly lengthy process involving a lot of fruit cake...


Finally, we decided on a recipe - and so we did a test run before starting the actual cake!


6 weeks before the wedding, we made the final fruit cakes. You need them to be made a while beforehand so you can regularly feed them with brandy and let the flavours mature. You also need to allow time to marzipan the cake a few days before you then ice the cake (we left ours for a week - you want the marzipan to have dried properly).




We were pretty happy with the finished product, decorated with simple burgundy ribbon and stunning flowers from our wedding florist Dinah. It tasted great too!


So here it is, the recipe for our wedding cake - ideal for any fruit cake requirements including birthday cakes, Christmas cakes and obviously, wedding cakes. Let us know what you think!

Ingredients - For 1 x 20cm fruit cake

350g sultanas
225g raisins
120g dried apricots
85g dates
50g candied peel
120g dried strawberries/cranberries/cherries {See what your local supermarket has, and decide the combination based on your taste preference!}
4 tbsp brandy
200g plain flour
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 tsp mixed spice
250g unsalted butter
125g light muscovado sugar
125g dark muscovado sugar {We did some experimenting and found having a mixture of light and dark worked best}
4 eggs
45g ground almonds
1/2 tbsp black treacle
1 lemon, zest only
1 orange, zest and juice

For icing

454g pack of ready rolled marzipan {We used Dr. Oetker's}
1kg pack of ready rolled icing {I would 100% recommend Renshaw's Sugarpaste EXTRA, which was recommended by She Who Bakes. I ordered ours from the Iced Jems Shop, along with this excellent pair of icing smoothers - which are currently on sale! Britt has a great picture of what a difference they can make here}

Equipment

Mixing bowl
Mixer
Measuring spoons
Sieve
Grater
Wooden spoon
20cm cake tin, greased and lined with baking paper

Method

***You need to start the process the night before you want to bake the cake!***

1. Soak the sultanas, raisins, dried apricots, dates, candied peel, dried berries, lemon zest, orange zest and juice in a bowl with the brandy overnight. This step is very important for letting the flavours develop, so don't miss it out!

2. The following day, preheat the oven to 140ºC/275ºF/gas mark 1. Cream together the butter and sugars with the mixer.

3. Add the eggs and mix until combined.

4. Add the black treacle, and sift in the flour, nutmeg, mixed spice and ground almonds. Mix again until combined.

5. Stir in the brandy-soaked fruit until well combined with the cake mix - this step is particularly good for your arm muscles...

6. Bake in the oven for approximately 3.5 hours {this cake requires a low and slow bake!} Keep an eye on the top and that it doesn't burn - if it looks like it's catching, simply cover with some foil. The cake should feel firm to touch when done, and you can use a cake tester/skewer to insert into the cake {if it comes out clean, the cake is fully baked} - however beware with this cake that if you skewer a sultana or piece of fruit, it's likely to come out sticky!

7. Once the cake has cooled completely, wrap well in greaseproof paper and a layer of foil, and store in an airtight box in a cool, dry place. Every week or so, pierce the cake in several places with a skewer and 'feed' with brandy. The cake can be stored like this for a few months if needed!

8. If you want to ice the cake, a fortnight or so before you need it, take it out of the box and cover with marzipan. Wrap it back up again in the greaseproof paper and store again in the box. About 5-7 days later, you can then ice your cake. Using ready rolled marzipan and icing makes this step so much easier.   If you have multiple tiers, wait until the day of eating until assembling them. We used three dowelling rods in the centre of the two bottom tiers in a triangle shape, cut at the surface of the cake so you couldn't see them - but they provide the support you need!

If you have any questions about making your own wedding cake, just comment below or tweet me. Obviously I am not by any means a proper baker, but if you want some advice from a slightly clueless but enthusiastic cake eater, I'm your gal!

~~~

If you liked this post, you might also enjoy The Wedding - Our Reception.

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