Read on for my recipe for Dundee cake
Since tomorrow is Burns Night I thought I should share a Scottish recipe with you today. Now I’m not going for anything haggis related, since I’ve already done that, instead it’s cake. Dundee cake to be precise. This Queen of Scottish baking has a fascinating history and deserves a place on any table.
The Scottish city of Dundee is famous in food production from way back. A woman called Janet Keiller and her family founded a dynasty dating back to the late 1700s that would rival that of the famous Cadburys and Rowntree of England. The Keillers first produced marmalade and Janet created this rich fruit cake topped with blanched Spanish almonds and gave it the name of the city, Dundee.
Scotland is a nation of bakers, every family would have their own recipes and pass them down through the generations.
This cake was mass produced by the Keiller family and, like their famous marmalade, soon became a staple in homes throughout the UK. Tradition dictates that the cake should only be decorated with whole almonds, icing is just not done!
While Janet Keiller would flavour her cake with her own candied orange peel I have used the grated zest of a lemon for citrus flavour. This recipe is from my book Simply Scottish Cakes & Bakes.
I know we have just gone through Christmas with that infamous brandy soaked cake but this Dundee cake is just as good. It will keep for up to three months well wrapped in a tin. This is a good recipe to have on standby when the urge for a heavenly fruit cake comes upon you.
- 18cm round spring form baking tin
- 400 g mixed dried fruit
- 50 g ground almonds
- 150 g unsalted butter
- 150 g golden caster sugar
- grated zest of 1 lemon
- 3 eggs beaten
- 115 g plain flour
- 2 tbsp brandy
- 50 g whole blanched almonds
- preheat oven to 180C and grease and line a deep 18cm spring form cake tin
- Mix together the dried fruit, ground almonds, lemon zest and brandy and set aside
- Cream together the butter and sugar till fluffy then add eggs one at a time
- sift in the flour and gradually fold into the mixture
- Add the fruit mix and stir well to combine
- Spoon batter into prepared baking tin and level off the top making a slight indent in centre
- Press the whole almonds gently on top of the batter, traditionally with one in the centre then circles getting larger and larger to the edges of the cake
- Bake for approx 1 hour
- Reduce oven temperature to only 50C and bake for a further hour or until a skewer inserted into the middle of the cake comes out clean
- Leave to cool in the tin for 20 minutes before removing and cooling completely on a wire rack
- wrap cake in foil and set aside for 1 week for the flavour to develop before eating
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