Rich Fruit Cake

Serves 20

250g currants
600g sultanas
250g raisins
60g glace cherries, chopped
60g mixed peel, chopped
60ml brandy
275g dairy-free margarine
175g dark brown sugar
100g light brown sugar
5 large eggs
1 lemon, zest
1 orange, zest
135g gluten-free plain flour
70g gluten-free oat flour or maize flour
70g ground almonds
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 teaspoon ground mixed spice

Place the currants, sultanas, raisins, cherries, mixed peel and brandy into a large bowl, cover and leave to soak overnight.

Line the cake tin with greaseproof paper. Preheat the oven to 150°c / 130°c fan oven / 300°f / gas mark 3.

Cream together the dairy-free margarine and both sugars until light and fluffy.

Beat in the eggs.

Fold in the soaked fruit, lemon and orange zest.

Sieve together the gluten-free flour, gluten-free oat flour, ground almonds, nutmeg and mixed spice and fold into the mixture.

Spoon into the cake tin and use the back of a spoon to level the top.

Cover the top of the cake with tin foil. Make a small hole in the centre. Cut a piece of greaseproof paper long enough to wrap around the cake tin. Fold into four lengthways and wrap around the cake tin, secure with sticky tape.

Cut a piece of cardboard slightly bigger than the cake tin. Sit the cake tin on top.

Bake for 4 – 5 hours until a knife inserted comes out clean.

Pour over more brandy when the cake is still warm – optional.

Leave the cake in the tin until it is cold, this will keep the cake moist and hold its shape. Wrap in clean greaseproof paper and tin foil and store in a cool place until needed. The cake is better if left to mature for two months before eating.

You can make your own gluten-free oat flour by blending gluten-free oats in a food processor until fine. This may not turn out as fine as shop bought but is not as expensive.