Best Christmas recipes from Bahrain chefs
The island's culinary stars give us their favourite festive feasts Discuss this article
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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
50g broken cashew nuts
40g dark brown sugar
40g mixed dried fruit
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.
130g unsalted butter
13g treacle syrup
1.3g baking powder
After the maceration period sift the flour twice with baking powder, add semolina and mix thoroughly.
Soften the butter, add the sugar and mix, incorporating the treacle and eggs little by little to form a smooth mixture.
Fold in the flour gently ensuring no lumps.
Us a greased cake tin dusted with flour and lined with baking parchment and bake in a preheated oven at 150°C for 45 minutes to an hour.
Once thoroughly cooled you can add icing and decorations.
(Note, measurements are approximate, we made 750kg of cake, this recipe should make around 1kg!)
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