This fruit cake stands out among other cakes because of its rich tradition. Its development started in the closing parts of the 1700s in the town of Dundee in Scotland.
There were then different types of fruit cakes in Scotland and Mary the Queen of Scots did not like glace cherries on her cake. It was then that Dundee cakes were topped with blanched almonds and were given to her.
Until today, Dundee cakes have blanched almond toppings. It was also known that Queen Elizabeth’s favorite at tea time is the Dundee cake.
Dundee cakes are perfect for desserts. The perfect blend of various fruit flavors and the citrus-like freshness make this cake truly different from other pastries. So if you cannot gobble up more fruits as you want to after dinner, a Dundee cake can be a very good alternative.
225 grams of plain flour
1 teaspoon of baking powder
180 grams of unsalted butter, room temperature
180 grams of muscovado sugar, light
3 tablespoons of milk
3 beaten large eggs
500 grams of mixed dried fruits
100 grams of whole glace cherry
Zest of 1 large lemon, thinly sliced or diced
100 grams of blanched almonds
3 tablespoons of apricot or marmalade
100 grams of ground almonds
2 teaspoon of caster sugar
- Pour boiling water over almonds on a small bowl. Leave for 5 minutes, drain and leave to dry.
- Preheat the oven to 180C/160 C fan/Gas Mark 4.
- Choose a loose-based 20 cm cake tin and line it with baking parchment.
- Beat the butter in a large bowl until it is soft. Add the sugar and continue beating until light and fluffy. Put orange zest and apricot jam.
- Sieve flour and baking powder onto the mixture and add eggs a little at a time while beating. Add some more flour as the mixture starts to curdle.
- Add what was left of the flour and ground almonds and mix. Pour 2 tablespoons of milk, add dried fruits and cherries and mix gently.
- Spoon the mixture into the cake tin. Level the top surface using the back of the spoon.
- Arranged the almonds in a circular pattern and bake for 45 minutes.
- Lower the oven temperature to 160C/140 C fan/Gas Mark 3 and cook until 60–80 minutes. Check every 10 minutes starting at 50 minutes of baking by inserting a wooden or metal skewer. There should be a few crumbs on the skewer if the cake is done.
- When the cake is cooked, remove it from the oven. Mix the caster sugar and 1 tablespoon of milk until sugar is dissolved and brush the mixture on the top surface of the cake. Return the cake for another 2-3 minutes.
- Allow the cake to cool in the tin before removing it. Wrap it in foil for at least two days before slicing.
A Dundee cake when wrapped properly in grease-proof paper and stored in an airtight tin can last for 1 ½ month. That means you can have a slice for an afternoon coffee and have it as a dessert at dinner the next day.
A small slice of Dundee cake for dessert can truly complement a rich dinner of greasy dishes. The citrusy flavor and the overall blend of the fruits can neutralize the aftertaste of greasy foods. Bigger slices of it can be perfect for dessert after a light meal.
A Dundee cake is somewhat thick that bigger slices can give you a full feeling.