It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas!

We are definitely on-board with the festive here at the bakery!

put some records on while I pour...

This weekend was time for our annual Winter Soirée; a time to catch up with friends and family and be merry! Tis the season after all!

This year we changed things up a bit.  Gone were the glazed ham, roast turkey and salmon…bring on the Bolly and canapés!  Of course, there were a few regulars…

The Chadong Christmas Cake and Mykie’s Mince Pies!

I do enjoy a table full of sweetness!

The Chadong Christmas Cake is the highlight of the baking calendar for us.  Not only do we try and improve on the taste of the cake each year but we also have a great time planning the décor!  The Cake is the centrepiece, the fruity glue that holds the evening together…it must be perfection (or as close as we can get given the restraints of time, resource and sanity).

run, run Rudolph!

This year we totally revamped the fruit cake which is usually just a Delia with a twist or two.  This year we wanted something different; something that still screamed fruit cake but lighter, fresher, and more appealing to the “fruit cake haters”.

The Fruit Cake Nativity

  • Mary: Dried Apricots
  • Wise Men: Dried Mango/Pineapple/Papaya
  • Baby Jesus: Maraschino Cherries
  • Angel Gabriel: Candied Mixed Peel
  • Joseph: Sultanas
  • Donkey: Pistachio Nuts
  • Shepherds: Lemoncello, Calvados, Apricot Brandy
  • Inn-Keeper: Honey

   As you can see, we made some big changes!  The cake batter was made with golden caster sugar a heap of vanilla and spiced with just a touch of cinnamon and a generous helping of ground ginger…light honey frivolity replaced dark treacly depth.

The design for this year was “Snow Stripe”; we wanted to create something rigid in design but with the Wondercat signature piping detail.  Over all it turned out OK.  There are a few areas that aren’t as surgically precise as we would of hoped for but in the time we allowed for decorating we will settle for good over great.

never such a blizzard before?

So, how was this mountain of blue hues received?  Pretty well!

It managed to retain the essence of a good Chrimbo Cake but really was zippier, lighter and brighter.  The tropical fruits and cherries    punctuated each mouthful brilliantly giving something more interesting than the traditional homogeneous treacly fudge of a classic cake.  This cake converted two “fruit cake haters” to total cake-munchers but the biggest compliment came from Moogi Leong; she rang the next day to say she really enjoyed the cake and that Grandma Glover (R.I.P.) would have loved it as she also wasn’t a fan of the traditional fruit cake so always had Dundee Cake at Christmas.  This had Mykie in floods when he hung up the phone…we are keeping this recipe (which I will post, promise) and dedicating it to the late, great Betty Glover!

a cake for my Grandma...*sheds a little tear*

The mince pies we made using the Cranberry Mincemeat of the previous post but once again we gave things a shake!  In place of the ground almonds in the sweet shortcrust pastry, we used THIS to give a richer, more nutty texture and taste.  It added a slightly wholemeal feel which contrasted nicely against the sweet cranberry and citrus tang of the filling…yummers!

If only really snowflakes came with pies attached...

The evening was a blast!  Wonderful to see everyone and ramp up the Christmas spirit!

Santa Baby, stick a fruit cake under the tree...

Not long to go now folks…Santa’s coming!!!!  Raise a glass to friends and family both living and departed and celebrate!!!!



Posted on December 11, 2011, in Cake, Celebration Cakes, Experimental and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Awesome cake! It’s all rolled fondant, right? You’ve got a real flair for those seriously professional-looking finishing touches. 🙂

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