Eggfree Wheat Christmas Cake
Eggfree Wheat Christmas Cake
Eggfree Wheat Christmas Cake is full of soaked dried and candied fruits, nuts and spices. A vegetarian friendly cake made without eggs and no alcohol is used to soak the fruit. A Christmas Cake that is incredibly easy to make, flavorful and moist.
I’ve been baking Eggfree Wheat Christmas Cake for several years but till now, was not able to put the recipe on my blog. Just as well as over the years subtle changes has resulted in a foolproof recipe. The changes I made is is replacing all purpose flour with wheat, replacing white sugar with brown. The types of dried fruits and candied fruits vary every year, depending on what is available. And I love to use my homemade Tea Masala/ Chai Spice Mixture to give it that warm spicy aroma and taste.
Baking Eggfree Wheat Christmas Cake as an Edible Gift
Many of friends do not bake a Christmas Cake. Therefore, this gives me the opportunity to bake and gift it to them. I bake small loaves, big ones, and individual servings too.Also I like using the individual baked ones for parties or as party favor. Any cake not used I store in the fridge and later warm it up and serve as a dessert with some ice cream or hot custard.
Some Important Points to Remember:
- Use dried fruits like cranberries, blueberries, cherries, raisins, sultana, pineapple, kiwi, strawberries, figs, dates, apricot, banana, apple, peaches, coconut, plums, candied cherries, candied orange and lemon peel, etc.
- Use nuts like cashew nuts, pistachios, walnuts, almonds, hazelnuts, macadamia, etc.
- Soak the dried fruit in fresh orange juice, apple juice, brewed black tea or rum, brandy, sherry or sweet wine.
- Chop the nuts and fruits nearly the same size about 1 cm. Bigger pieces makes cutting the cake into nice slices difficult.
- Bake the cake at low temperature. Because this cake is loaded with fruits and nuts and is pretty dense, bake it at low temperature. Otherwise the middle of the cake will remain raw.
- Use fresh spices.
- Coat the soaked and strained fruit with flour.
- Don’t overflow the tin with batter.
- Use wheat flour that is suitable for rotis, paratha and not the one for bread.
To Decorate or Not
- Generally Christmas Cakes are decorated with marzipan, royal icing or fondant.
- Some sprinkle icing or powdered sugar over it.
- Some decorate it with nuts and fruits on top.
- Or leave it plain, tastes just as good.
Some Other Cake Ideas for Christmas
Easy Christmas Cake – with egg, the moist dried or candied fruits are used and requires no soaking at all.
Orange Saffron Semolina Cake – a different kind of cake to enjoy for Christmas, light with a melt in the mouth kind of texture.
Pistachio and Rose Cake – an exotic bake for Christmas, flavorful and aromatic.
Orange Chocolate Muffins – eggfree, with candied cherries and ideal for kids as some don’t like dense fruit cakes.
Try Renu’s Whole Wheat Classic Christmas Cake whereby she soaks the dried fruit in brandy a week or so before baking.
Ingredients required for Eggfree Wheat Christmas Cake
- Dried Fruits – any of your choice, best to take a mixture of what is available in your area. Check the list I’ve mentioned above.
- Fresh orange Juice – you can use brewed black tea or apple juice. Its used for soaking the dried fruits.
- Wholewheat Flour – I use the flour we normally use for roti, paratha. Usually called atta.
- Baking Powder – rising agent
- Baking Soda – Soda Bicarbonate – rising agent
- Mixed Nuts – lightly roasted and chopped, any of your choice.
- Salt – adding salt balances the overall flavour
- Brown Sugar – I’ve used what we get here locally. Use any brown sugar or coconut sugar. Feel free to replace the sugar with jaggery powder.
- Melted Butter – unsalted or salted. For vegan version replace the butter with a suitable fat or coconut oil.
- Fresh lemon zest – optional, can add vanilla extract or orange zest.
- For the Spice mixture – you need ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom and clove powder. Make sure the powders are fresh and aromatic.
- For vegan version replace the butter with a vegan butter or oil.
- Any sweet food should be consumed in moderation.
EGGFREE WHEAT CHRISTMAS CAKE
- 2 cups dried fruits cut into small pieces
- 1¼ cups fresh orange juice or brewed black tea
- 2½ cups wholewheat flour
- 1½ tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp baking soda soda bicarbonate
- 1 cup mixed nuts roasted and chopped
- ½ tsp salt
- 1¼ -1½ cup brown sugar
- 1 cup (250ml) melted butter
- 1 tbsp lemon zest
Spice Mixture for the Cake:
- 1 tbsp ginger powder
- 1 tsp cinnamon powder
- ½ tsp nutmeg powder
- ¼ tsp cardamom powder
- ¼ tsp clove powder
For the buttermilk:
- 1¼ cup milk
- 2 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- Chop any large fruit into small pieces. Add fresh juice to a glass bowl or container.
- Add the chopped fruit to it along with the vanilla essence. Mix well.
- Cover and let it chill in the fridge for 8-12 hours.
- Quite a bit of the juice will be soaked up by the fruit. Strain out the excess using a strainer.
- Mix milk and lemon juice and let it rest for 15-20 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 150°C.
- Line the baking tins (9X5 inches) with parchment paper or grease them lightly with butter and dust with flour.
- Roast the nuts lightly till crisp either on a pan or in the oven at 150°C.
- Let them cool down a bit and then chop them into small pieces.
- Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, the spices together into a big bowl.
- Add the nuts and lemon zest. Mix well.
- Add the soaked fruit and mix well.
- In another bowl whisk melted butter, buttermilk and sugar.
- Add the whisked liquid mixture to the flour mixture and mix lightly just till the flour gets wet.
- Pour the batter into the prepared tins 2/3rd full.
- Put the tins in the oven to bake.
- Bake the cake for 1 hr 30 minutes or till the top is golden brown and the cake is done. A skewer, or cocktail stick inserted in the middle of the cake should come out clean if the cake is done.
- Remove the cake from the oven when its done. Leave it in the tin for 10-15 minutes.
- Remove carefully from the tin and let it cool completely on a wire rack.
- Can bake them in small loaf tins to gift friends and family. The above amount makes 4 small loaves.
- For a round cake, use a 10 inch cake tin.
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