Hestons Hidden Orange Christmas Cake

Submitted by Wayne gatt

Hestons Hidden Orange Christmas Cake

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Serving: 8
Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 6 hours
Total Time 6 hours 2 minutes


  • oranges
  • 6 cups of sugar
  • 1 kg mixed fruit
  • 125ml whisky or rum, plus extra to feed
  • 125g butter, softened
  • 125g brown sugar
  • 4 eggs, beaten
  • 130g plain flour
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp mixed spice
  • 50g ground almonds
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 50g flaked almonds


  • Prick oranges all around several times with a needle ,put oranges in a sauce pan covered with water and boil for 30minutes ,this takes out the bitterness from the skin ,3/4 fill your slow add 6 cups of sugar ,turn on high for 2hrs then low for 4 ,leave in slow cooker ,next day repeat the cooking ,then remove the oranges and liquid from the slow cooker ,add oranges and cook on low for 2hrs with tea towel under the lid
  • 1. Put the dried fruit and peel in a bowl along with the whisky, cover and leave to soak overnight. Stir well before use. Grease a pudding steamer
  • 2. Cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then gradually add the eggs, beating well after each addition so the mixture doesn't curdle.
  • 3. Mix together the sifted flour, baking powder, spice, ground almonds and a pinch of salt and then fold this into the butter and sugar mixture. Add the soaked fruits, and any remaining whisky, the lemon zest, chopped almonds and ginger, and stir to combine.
  • 4. Tip t1/3 of the mixture into your pudding steamer add the candied orange ,spoon remaining mixture over the orange
  • 5. Put the cake in the slow cooker,half fill with boiling water,my steamer was to large for my slow cooker so I put the lid on and wrapped with foil,cook on high for 2hrs then on low for 4 ,but test after 3 with a skewer
  • 6. Leave to cool in the tin then use the skewer to poke a few holes almost all the way through the cake, and brush them with more whisky. With the baking parchment still attached, wrap well in greaseproof paper and store in an airtight tin or a layer of foil, repeating the feeding every week or so until you're ready to ice just before Christmas.
  • Inspired by a recipe from the great Heston Blumenthal - http://www.thefatduck.co.uk/Heston-Blumenthal/

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