Mum's Christmas loaf cakes with easy icing

Nici Wickes shares her mum's delicious gift idea. This recipe sees one big batch of Christmas cake mix divided between smaller loaf tins and dressed up with a simple icing and some glacé cherries

By Nici Wickes
  • 2 hrs 30 mins cooking
  • Makes 4
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  • 2 kilogram mixed dry fruit
  • 2 tablespoon honey
  • 1 large apple, grated
  • 1/2 cup brandy
  • 1 1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 2 1/4 cup flour
  • 3 teaspoon baking powder
  • 300 gram butter, melted
  • 5 eggs, beaten lightly
  • 1 cup icing sugar
  • water
  • glacé cherries, to decorate


  • 1
    In a very large mixing bowl, mix the fruit, honey, apple and brandy, then leave overnight.
  • 2
    Preheat oven to 150ºC. Prepare four small (15-18cm long) loaf tins or small (15-18cm diameter) round cake tins by lining with a few layers of folded newspaper and then two layers of baking paper, sides and bottom.
  • 3
    Add brown sugar to the fruit mix and combine thoroughly. Add the flour and baking powder, giving it another good mix. Now add the melted butter and finally the eggs. Make sure to mix well – a strong arm is needed!
  • 4
    Divide the mixture evenly between the tins. Place the tins on a magazine or folded newspaper in the middle rack(s) of the oven. Bake until a skewer comes out clean – about 2-2½ hours.
  • 5
    Leave to cool in the cake tins.
  • 6
    Make the icing with icing sugar mixed with water to a thin drizzling consistency. Spoon over the cakes and garnish with cherries. Store in a cool place in an airtight container until needed.


  • Makes 4 cakes (800g each). - The long cooking time means you need to insulate your tins with newspaper so the outside of the cakes don’t burn. Believe it or not – they don’t catch fire!

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