Baileys fruit and nut loaf cakes
- FOR THE CAKES
- 225g unsalted butter, softened
- 225g light soft brown sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 250g plain flour
- 300g sultanas
- 200g currants
- 200g seedless raisins
- 200g glacé cherries, halved
- 40g Brazil nuts, chopped
- 40g hazelnuts, chopped
- 40g macadamia nuts, chopped
- 40g whole blanched almonds, chopped
- 6tbsp Baileys The Original Irish cream to 'feed' the cake (optional)
- TO DECORATE
- 40g hazelnuts, roughly chopped
- 100g icing sugar
- 2tbsp Baileys The Original Irish cream (or cold espresso coffee)
- 40g macadamia nuts, roughly chopped
Preheat the oven to 150C/130C Fan/Gas 2. Lin two 21cm x 11cm loaf tins with 3 layers of baking paper.
Beat the butter and soft brown sugar together until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, 1 at a time, adding 1 rounded tablespoon of the flour with each of the last 2 eggs.
Fold in the rest of the four, then the sultanas, currants, raisins, glacé cherries and chopped nuts.
Divide the mixture between the 2 cake tins and level the mixture. Dampen your fingertips and pat all over the top - this helps stop it becoming too hard when cooking. Bake for 1 hr.
Cut 2 pieces of baking paper the size of the top of the tins and make a hole the size of a 10p coin in the centre of each - this will help stop the top browning too much. Lay the pieces of paper on top of the cakes.
Reduce the oven temperature to 140C/120C Fan/Gas 1 and cook for 1 hr 20 mins or until a skewer inserted in the centre comes out clean. Start testing after 1 hr, as ovens can vary.
Remove the cakes from the tins (keeping the paper on) and cool on a wire rack. When cold, discard the paper and wrap the cakes individually in fresh baking paper then foil. Store in an airtight container.
If you want to 'feed' the cakes, you'll need to start 5 days before decorating. Prick the cakes all over with a skewer and drizzle 1tbsp of the Baileys over each cake. Wrap and store as before. Repeat every day for another 2 days.
When you're ready to decorate the cake, preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. Put the hazelnuts on a baking tray. Bake for 5 mins until lightly toasted.
Mix the icing sugar with the Baileys (or espresso, if using). Drizzle in a zigzag pattern over the top of the cake. Decorate with the toasted hazelnuts and macadamias, then set aside for the icing to set.