The island's culinary stars give us their favourite festive feasts
Time Out Bahrain staff
An invitation to the traditional Christmas cake mixing ceremony for the Elite Group, which takes place each year at the beginning of November, got us wondering about just what goes into some of our favourite festive offerings.
First off, we had to ask why the Christmas cake has to be prepared so early. Well, apparently with such a rich and heavy, fruity mixture you have to allow several weeks for the fruits and nuts to absorb the liberal quantity of beverages they are steeped in before actually mixing them into a cake!
We had great fun getting involved and finding out chef Sultan’s recipe.
Christmas plum cake
Ingredients 50g broken cashew nuts 40g almonds 50g prunes 40g dark brown sugar 40g mixed dried fruit 40g raisins 40g blackcurrants 50g red cherries 10g strawberry jam 15g orange jam 30g orange marmalade with peel 15g apricot jam 15g candied ginger 30g candied peel Sprinkling almond essence 2.5g cinnamon powder 1.3g green cardamom 8ml sailors’ beverage 9ml French beverage
Mix thoroughly all the above but only around two thirds of the beverages and store in a cool, dark place to macerate over several weeks. Turn the mixture every five to six days adding the remaining beverage.
Marinate the blackcurrants, raisins and mixed candied fruits with the beverages for a minimum of 24 hours.
Cream the butter and the two kinds of sugar in a blender for five minutes.
Add the eggs gradually.
Strain the flour, baking powder, salt and spices, add the sliced almonds and add it in the above mixture and mix well
Add the vanilla essence.
Bake at 160°C-170°C for 60 to 75 minutes.
This recipe will serve 10 to 15 Persons (And yes we know Christmas pudding is usually steamed for hours but this is the version for those who have better things to do, which we reckon covers our readers!)