Freya Miller, Pol Roger Portfolio Marketing Manager
Freya joined Pol Roger Portfolio in 2011 and since this time has been lucky enough to get involved with the many interesting and diverse marketing events and projects that the Portfolio supports. Freya is also a keen cook and baker and never happier than when combining her love of fine wine, spirits and food, in the company of family and friends.
From everyone at Pol Roger Portfolio, we would like to take the opportunity to wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
The Ultimate Christmas Cake with ‘H’ by Hine VSOP
For the presoaking:
- 450g currants
- 175g sultanas
- 175g raisins
- 50g chopped glacé cherries
- 50g mixed chopped candied peel
- 100ml ‘H’ by Hine VSOP
For the cake:
- 225g plain flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ level teaspoon nutmeg, freshly grated
- 1 level teaspoon ground mixed spice
- 225g dark brown soft sugar
- 4 large free range eggs
- 1 dessertspoon golden syrup
- 225g butter
- 50g chopped almonds
- Zest of 1 lemon and 1 orange
- For feeding and topping: ‘H’ by Hine to ‘feed’ the cake
Equipment: You will also need a 20cm round loose based cake tin (or similar), greased, with base and side lined plus some baking parchment. Tie a double band of brown paper around the outside of the tin for extra protection.
Presoak the dried the night before you make the cake. Put all the fruits in a bowl and mix them with the ‘H’ by Hine, cover with a cloth and leave them to soak for a minimum of 12 hours.
When you’re ready to cook the cake, preheat the oven to 140°C, gas mark 1.
Sift the flour, salt and spices into a very large roomy mixing bowl then add the sugar, eggs, syrup (warm it a little first to make it easier) and butter and beat with an electric hand whisk until everything is smooth and fluffy.
Gradually fold in the pre-soaked fruit mixture, chopped nuts and finally the grated lemon and orange zests.
Using a large kitchen spoon, transfer the cake mixture into the prepared tin, spread it out evenly with the back of the spoon.
Take a double square of baking parchment with a 50p sized hole in the centre (for extra protection during the cooking) and place this not on top of the mixture itself but on the rim of the brown paper.
Bake the cake on the lowest shelf of the oven for 4 hours until it feels springy in the centre when lightly touched.
Sometimes it can take 30–45 minutes longer than this, but in any case don’t look at it for 4 hours.
Cool the cake for 30 minutes in the tin, then remove it to a wire rack to finish cooling.
When it’s cold, ‘feed’ it by making small holes in the top and bottom with a cocktail stick and spooning in a couple of tablespoons of ‘H’ by Hine, then wrap it in parchment lined foil and store in an airtight tin.
Remember to ‘feed’ it regularly until you need to ice or eat it. Enjoy with a glass of ‘H’ by Hine VSOP; Merry Christmas!