25/10/2008

Vegan MoFO Day 25: I wasn't a happy bunny but I am now

I baked my Christmas Cake yesterday and it all went horribly wrong. You're probably thinking why the hell am I baking my Christmas Cake in October and I'm all horribly wrong. Right?
Well...let me tell you - I like my Christmas Cakes like I like a cheap date - moist, fruity and pissed in no time! I ply my Christmas Cake with so much alcohol between now and the big day that you really don't want a naked flame to go anywhere near it come Yuletide!! This is my first vegan Christmas and as I will be taking this Cake all the way to England with me to show off to all the rellies, I want this Cake to ROCK!! I want it to be even more special than my old faithful Christmas Cake recipe that was passed down to me by my mother who was, in turn, given it by her mother who was given it by her mother etc etc. You get my point. This Cake has to be the freaking business! I trawled the interwebs looking for a suitable recipe when this one caught my eye. I liked it because, apart from the Fruit, it doesn't contain any sugar, it uses no Marg or Oil and it's by The Vegan Society!! So it's got to be good right??!! I also like the fact it uses Marzipan as an optional addition. Seeing as there was no sugar in the actual Cake mixture - I really really liked the thought of the Marzipan, won't it be a really nice treat when tucking into a slice - a Marzipan surprise!! So - this was my Cake of choice. Went out, bought all the ingredients (boy aren't dried Fruits and Marzipan expensive!!) and set to. I thought, when I had mixed all the ingredients together, that it seemed a little dry - but I had measured out everything and followed the recipe to a T (about the ONLY time I actually do follow a recipe) so I figured it would all be alright. Have faith in the recipe Jeni! Ha blinking Ha! I took the Cake out of the oven, went to flip it over on a plate and half of it came out whilst the other half was welded to the bottom of the tin through the medium of melted Marzipan. Man that stuff is like superglue!! So, after my initial panic and bout of swearing (I really do swear like a docker), I quickly flipped it all back into the pan and cooked it for another ten mins thinking to myself it's better to leave the Cake to go cold before trying to take it out of the tin - give the Marzipan time to harden up and solidify, ya know. So when I took it out the second time I gently scraped a knife around the edges and left the Cake to cool. I went to look at it today and guess what?
TA DAA!!!
It looks alright, it smells HEAVENLY so fingers crossed it's gonna taste just as good. It seems the Sprites were Spritely elsewhere 'cos Zoey had mischief afoot in her household too!
The Planets must have been all out of sync - though I did check my Chrondala to see if the time boded well. The Chrondala is an ancient, secret manuscript of ancient lore passed down through generations to those who are worthy of it's gift, and is highly sought after by Sages and Parsley's the world over (and can be found here for free). FREE!! I paid 2 quid for mine years ago and this little beauty has made me so happy ever since - 2 quid well spent. I swear every time I look at it I discover something I've never seen before.
If you're stuck for a gift for someone - print out the Chrondala - I can't think of anyone who wouldn't like this. I bought a cheap glass frame to keep it safe and snug and I LOVE mine.
Today's song is If You Want to Sing Out, Sing Out by the FANTASTIC Cat Stevens - don't ask me what he calls himself now 'cos I will embarrass myself - he will always be Cat to me. This song is from the totally FAB film Harold and Maude - if you've never seen this film then you HAVE to!! It is in my top 5 favourite movies of all time, I love it even more than The Wizard of Oz!!
:)

25 comments:

Becks - Not a Rabbit. said...

When good christmas cakes go bad! How dare it stick to the pan!?
I always thought the marzipan went on after baking (underneath the icing) but you actually bake it into the cake?
Who am I to question the wonder of fruit cake when I don't even like the stuff??
Glad it came good in the end ~ I really hope it dazzles the rellies :o)

Joanna said...

jeni,
i'm glad that damn cake turned out ok!! marzipan is pretty expensive- that's a fun ingredient for a cake, though. i would've been so pissed if it didn't bake together the second time. it better taste good after all that work.

Felicity said...

ooo, that looks good, I think I'll make Christmas cake this year... maybe soak it with the rum from my rumtopf (sluuurp).

Chelsea said...

So that's what Americans call "fruit cake" with detest... it looks tasty to me, though! I didn't know it had booze in it - even better! haha thanks for the link - I've always wondered what Yorkshire pudding is :).

Bex said...

oh thank you so much for this. I really want to make Christmas cake this year (it's a tradition in my husband's family, you brits and your traditions) so I though it would be nice but I've never made one before never mind vegan. This is the encouragement I needed to go for it. His mum isn't going to believe it.

Jeni Treehugger said...

Go for it!
Just learn from my mistakes Bex and be warned - it does look very dry when all mixed up. I figured this wouldn't matter 'cos the copious amounts of brandy I'm gonna add to it will keep it moist and succulent. Fingers crossed!!

(GAH! I can't wait 'til Christmas now!!)

half pint pixie said...

marzipan in the middle is an interesting idea. How frequently will you be feeding it booze? I should make a christmas cake, I should,but I am so lazy

Jeni Treehugger said...

Pixie - the whole Marzipan in the middle is what cinched this recipe for me. I will be feeding it alcohol roughly every second day, about 2 tablespoons each time.

River said...

What an adventure! Your amazing kitchen witchery skills made it all work out in the end!

Kelly said...

I agree that the marzipan is a fun twist. My guess is if it smells good it probably tastes fantastic too!!!

gwnio3 said...

Yum! Thanks for the recipe Jeni & for that Chrondala link. I love it!

shellyfish said...

I love christmas cakes, but have never made a saucy one - so you'll be feeding it rum every other day, but where will it live? In a sealed container? I ask because I want to try a grown up christmas cake this year and you will be my "spiritual" guide (ha! I am so freaking hilarious! get it? spirits?). Thank you for your knowledge - and Harold and Maude is one of my freaking favourite movies ever in the world!

Zoey said...

Hi Jeni,

I am impressed with your ability to save that cake! I am also impressed that you are preparing for Christmas already. I bet that cake will be great.

Jeni Treehugger said...

LOL!
Shellyfish - I keep it wrapped up in tin foil,inside a plastic bag in an airtight container until I am ready to decorate it (which will be a week before Christmas). I'm feeding my Cake Brandy because that is what I had in the cupboard, leftover from last years Cake actually.

Caty said...

Oh, I absolutely love christmas cake! I really like the idea of baking the marzipan in it, because although I love marzipan I'm far to clumsy to actually ice a cake properly with out it coming out looking a total mess.

Karene said...

Wow! I am inspired to make one myself... it has been ages since I had a good bit of fruit cake... and there's nothing like making your own and loading it up with all the goodies you prefer... I am a cherry and almond girl myself with as much rum as that baby can absorb!

Ginger said...

that's a rockin' cake! i can't wait till christmas either jsut so you can tell me how it tastes!

and haha, cat stevens calls himself yusuf islam now, and he still rocks!

sp said...

The cake looks amazing. Brandy every couple of days? That sounds like a fun project. I may make this one.

Also thanks for the Chrondala link. Now I have a gift idea for just the person who will appreciate it.

Monique a.k.a. Mo said...

This is just hilarious!

Mandee said...

I'm glad your cake worked out in the end! And I got excited when you mentioned the Chrondala but then I opened the link and realised it's for you lot in the North! It's ok because I have a Moon Diary written for Australia but it looks similar to your Chrondala!

Bethany said...

I love that song. always puts me in a good mood.

I'd think that cake would be rotten by xmas. Is it the booze?

I made fruitcake once, made my sister buy me a pint of rum to soak said fruitcake (I was in High School at the time), then I just went out and drank it at a party. C'mon, you gotta have your priorities straight :)

thanks for the link to the fruitcake recipe. there are sooooo many tasty looking recipes on that link!

Jeni Treehugger said...

Glad you appreciated the Chrondala link - I was going to buy a few to give as gifts for Crimbo and when I saw the guys at Spiral Seed are now letting us all download it for free my mind was blown away!! How cool are they! Sorry Mandee - it is totally for the Northern Hemisphere. Couldn't you turn it upside down? Hee hee hee.

Bethany - there are some great sounding recipes there. All the booze in the Cake is what preserves it. I make one every Christmas and they are just so amazing you gotta try it to believe it.
GAH!
Hurry up Christmas!!
LOL!

Sanja said...

Hmm, maybe I should try a christmas cake this year... I always forget because you have to make them so early...

Sanja said...

Wait, did you make the boozy fruit cake or the Christmas pudding? And will it really be okay at the end of December? And what alcohol are you going to use? Didn't see anything about that in the recipe...

Jeni Treehugger said...

It was the boozy Fruit Cake sanja (boozy being the operative word!!) And it will be fine by Christmas - the alcohol acts as a preservative. I make Christmas Cake every year only this will be my first vegan one. I'm using Brandy cos that's what I've got - I've always used brandy for some reason.