Monday, 15 December 2014

Basic Vegan Fruit Cake + I'm on Instagram!

I used to feel a bit of an instinctive cringe when faced with fruit cake. The fruit cake I ate when I was younger was filled with dried citrus peel, which I dislike, and had a strong alcohol taste. It always seemed like a poor runner-up type of cake (not chocolate!), a cake for grown ups.

I love it now! It's just so festive, isn't it? It tastes like Christmas. I love the spiced flavour of the cake with the dried fruit. Or maybe I'm just old...

The great thing about this recipe is that it's a kind of "build your own" fruit cake. I adapted this recipe from a recipe someone shared with me years ago. You could vary the type and amount of dried fruits you use (more dried fruit for a denser cake), add other ingredients such as nuts or even chocolate and change around the spices.

You could ice the cake with a cinnamon icing (double the recipe for this one if you use it for this cake), a vegan buttercream icing or just sprinkle icing sugar on the top if you're short of time! 

I love using a combination of sultanas, dried blueberries and cranberries in this cake because I'm not a fan of the citrus peel and preservatives found in the standard mixed dried fruit you buy in the supermarket. 

couldn't resist the santa!
This cake takes two hours to bake at a low temperature, but is very easy and quick to prepare.  

Basic Vegan Fruit Cake

3 cups self raising flour
2-4 cups dried fruit (I used 1 cup sultanas, 1/2 cup dried blueberries and 1/2 cup dried cranberries. More dried fruit creates a denser cake)
finely grated rind of 1 lemon
2 - 2 1/2 tsp of spices (I used 2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp nutmeg and 1/4 tsp cardamom)
1/2 cup raw sugar
1 2/3 cups water
1/2 cup canola oil
1 heaped tbsp treacle or molasses

Preheat oven to 150C. 

Combine all dry ingredients. Stir in the water, oil and treacle/molasses until just mixed.

Pour into a greased and lined round cake tin (make sure it's deep enough, it's quite a high cake). 

Bake for 2 hours until firm, risen and golden brown. 

On a different note, I'm now on Instagram

One of my best friends from high school (she has nearly 30K followers!) signed me up when she was visiting recently. I seem to need to be dragged reluctantly towards new technology, but I'll admit that I'm having fun sharing and recording photos of my food that don't warrant a blog post of their own or I just don't have time to blog about. There are so many amazing photos of vegan food in Instagram - as if I needed any more fuel for my cooking obsession!


  1. I think I feel the same way about instagram - it is an interesting platform but is just another something to keep me busy. BTW love the plate on the jam pic

    And I know what you mean about cake - I have wanted to make a Christmas cake this year but I don't think it is the year for one. Have gone down the mince pie route instead. But I do love Christmas cake - though I still am no lover of that plastic icing that used to be de rigeur. I agree that finding the dried fruit you love is the key to loving a fruit cake.

    1. Thanks Johanna! Yes there are too busy things online relating to food that suck your time away, but at least with Instagram you can just post quick pics with minimal text if
      You're in a rush! I haven't add mince pies before but would love to have a go...

  2. I have traditionally not liked fruit cake either...but that is traditional fruit cake and yours sounds far more my style! I may just have to try it, as you're right, it is very festive.

    Congratulations about instagram too. I have held back as think time will not permit another thing, but I'm glad you are having fun!

    1. Thanks Kari! I hope this cake is a nice addition to your Xmas festivities!

  3. It's definitely something that you grow to like as you get older. I never liked it as a child, but it's definitely something I look forward to cooking and eating now.