Apricot and brandy Christmas cake

Preparation time


Cooking time

over 2 hours


Makes 20cm/8in cake

Mary Berry recipes
From Saturday Kitchen


  • 300g/9oz dried apricots, chopped
  • 225g/8oz currants
  • 255g/8oz sultanas
  • 225g/8oz raisins
  • 90ml/3½fl oz brandy
  • 225g/8oz butter, at room temperature
  • 225g/8oz light muscovado sugar
  • 225g/8oz plain flour
  • 4 large eggs
  • 350g/12oz glace cherries, halved, rinsed and dried
  • 2 oranges, grated zest only
  • apricot jam for glaze


  1. Soak the chopped apricots and dried fruit except the cherries in the brandy in a bowl overnight - leave out in the kitchen and by the morning the fruit will have absorbed the brandy.

  2. Grease and line a 20cm/8in-deep round cake tin with a double layer of greased greaseproof paper or parchment paper. Pre-heat the oven to 140C/275F/Gas 1.

  3. Cream the butter and sugar together in a very large mixing bowl, add the remaining ingredients, including the dried fruit mixture, and continue to mix until well blended.

  4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and spread out evenly with the back of a spoon. Cover the top of the cake loosely with a double layer of greaseproof paper.

  5. Bake in the preheated oven for about 3½ hours or until the cake is a pale golden colour, feels firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Keep an eye on the cake and if it is getting too brown, cover it loosely with foil. Allow the cake to cool in the tin, then turn it out.

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