Delia’s Christmas cake step-by-step

So I made my very first Christmas cake, on what I’m calling Stir Up Sunday Plus One (ie it was Monday). I used the classic Delia recipe because I like a Christmas cake  you could wedge a door open with, and one that lasts into at least February. I used to make cakes with my Mum (hiya!) and have stirred many a Christmas cake but this is my first go all on my own. Went OK, but I did have to google a few things.

How to line a cake tin

Time approx: 4pm. Delia said to line the tin but beyond that she wasn’t too specific, so I found this video very useful. Double baking paper on the bottom and insides of the tin, plus more on top of the cake.

preparing christmas cake tin

Then you have to wrap the outside of the tin in brown paper or newspaper. I used the Lewisham Shopper, and for an extra festive touch chose pages featuring ads for the local panto. When the recipe says ‘cook’s string’ I just used… string.

delia christmas cake ingredients

Time approx: 4.50pm. Fruit has been soaking in brandy, butter, eggs, sugar whizzed up and flour and spices sieved from a great height. Injuries sustained so far: 1, nutmeg-grating based.

folding in christmas cake

Again, wasn’t that confident about the folding in, as Delia was proper going on about it and how important it was not to mess it up. So I checked in with this fella for tips. Then I got to do the wish. The gent submitted his by email from work. Ooo, the Future…

cake batter in tin

Time approx: 5.30pm. Woo! It’s in the tin. Just time to double check how long to put it in t’oven for. Delia doesn’t give a time or temp for a fan oven so it was on to MumsNet discussion boards. I know! And not even any time to stop and post a comment on breastfeeding. The answer, roughly, is do it at 125C and check after a bit less than 4 hours.

Christmas cake in fan oven

Time approx: 5.40pm. I definitely haven’t muddled up celcius and farenheit – but I did earlier in proceedings. Double check everything if you’re a twit!

cooling christmas cake

Time approx: 10.20pm. It’s out. It springs back when you push it. I think it’s cooked. Who knows? It’s bedtime anyway. Half an hour cooling in the tin – just time to watch a Mighty Boosh.

Finished Christmas cake

Time approx: 11pm. The house smells amazing. My beautiful cake. I’m gonna feed you with brandy and marzipan you. Then eat you. See you in 27 days.



10 Responses to “Delia’s Christmas cake step-by-step”

  1. patsy
    November 28, 2012 at 9:19 am #

    It does give a beautiful smell to the house. It can also last for months in a tin!…. One tip from a more mature respondent – get the nice white marzipan ready-made and don’t be tempted to use that awful roll-out icing.

    • myfriendshouse
      November 28, 2012 at 11:06 am #

      Thanks. Yes, it’ll be posh marzipan and no white icing. x

  2. Trish
    November 28, 2012 at 10:28 am #

    Grandma would be so proud! X

  3. myfriendshouse
    November 28, 2012 at 11:07 am #

    Thanks Trish. I haven’t boiled a Christmas pudding for hours, but I still feel quite proud of myself x

  4. Frances
    November 28, 2012 at 11:53 am #

    I wish I actually liked Christmas cake and/or Christmas pudding. Myself, I stick to making mince pies 🙂

  5. Helene
    November 28, 2012 at 5:08 pm #

    Brilliant! Your mother would be so proud too. Maybe you should put a tiny morsel in a box (like wedding cake) and send her a taste as she’s not making one herself this year. Presumably the injury didn’t require a trip to A&E.

    • myfriendshouse
      November 28, 2012 at 7:13 pm #

      ahhh… I’ll bring you some in January. Lewisham A&E was spared my presence, thank goodness x

  6. Madeleine
    November 28, 2012 at 9:05 pm #

    And almost more impressive is that you didn’t splatter that laptop and radio with cake mixture! – I would have. Off to get my panettone from Lidl for 3.99……but I have made 9 jars of mincemeat.

    • myfriendshouse
      November 29, 2012 at 6:40 pm #

      Well done you. I think realistically it’s going to be a mince pie-free Christmas as i won’t have time and bought ones are just… gross.

  7. Decorator's Notebook
    November 30, 2012 at 12:49 pm #

    Nice job my friend. Delia would be proud of your cake and wowed by your technological ingenuity. Now for the best bit – sloshing on lashings of brandy for a month. Just before bedtime and one for the cook…

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