Sunshine before the rain



Top to bottom: Amelia’s bird list, Totoro playing to itself in the sitting room (there’s too much else to do to be sitting around watching tv  – nice for a change), a cup of tea and a slice of mum’s boiled fruit cake. Wanna know how to cook it? Straight from Mum who is sitting next to me on the couch listening to the rain while my Dad reads the girls their bedtime story:

My Mum’s Boiled Fruit Cake

Soak 4 cups of mixed dried fruit (raisins, sultanas, currants and mixed peel etc) in 1/2 cup of brandy overnight.

Next day put 125g of butter, the soaked mixed fruit, 2 tablespoons of treacle and 1 cup of water in a big saucepan and bring slowly to the boil. Let it simmer for a minute or so. Remove from heat and let it cool.

Beat 2 eggs together and add to the mixture with 1 cup of sifted self-raising flour and 1 cup of plain flour. Mix it all around and pour into a square tin lined with baking paper.

Cook at 150°c on the bottom shelf for at least a couple of hours. Test with a skewer inserted in the middle of the cake. When it comes out clean, it’s ready. Let it cool in the tin. Eat with cups of tea or glasses of milk in the middle of the night (at least, that’s what my Dad recommends).

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15 Responses

  1. Kirsty says:

    What a gorgeous time you guys are having! Thanks for sharing this holiday with us.

  2. Suse says:

    Tell Amelia we have Welcome Swallows who come to the same little mud nest above our laundry door each year. They’re here right now, tweeting away as they sit on their eggs. Here’s a photo from last year (terrible flash photo but you get the idea)

    and here’s a shot of how incredibly TINY their eggs are

    My eldest son went through a huge bird watching phase when he was about seven, and that year Father Christmas brought him a beautiful big field guide to birds.

  3. Lisa says:

    I love Amelia’s bird list! my girls make lists all the time, must be girl thing! Your mum’s fruit cake looks delish!

  4. I’d like to be by you. I xant a slice of cake with warm tea, Totoro, and sit on a sofa listening to Granddad’s stories.

  5. Umatji says:

    Oh lovely. Lovely cake and lovely list and lovely absence in the middle photo!Oh I desire a holiday – especially one wiht grandparents!

  6. Jennifer says:

    The cake looks yummy, how nice to enjoy a cup of tea and some cake with your mom. Loving the bird list, children’s handwriting is so precious.

  7. Sad, isn’t it. But what can you expect in this situation?

  8. Annika says:

    That fruitcake sounds delightful! I’ll be trying it as soon as I get the ingredients.

  9. Fanie says:

    Mmm… I love the idea of added brandy in the dried fruits. :-DI am very tempted to try this recipe, it is so easy and looks very yummy. Thanks!

  10. kirsten says:

    Oh, dear. I think I shall have to make that cake!

  11. Barbara says:

    It wasn’t until the cake was mixed that I remembered that I don’t have a square tin. I am hoping a butterfly works tine ….(it was either that or Dora). Thank you for your lovely blog. I am very jealous of your holiday. I can’t see that type happening in my family. You are indeed blessed.

  12. Mandy says:

    Wow. Does she know all those birds, like an avid bird watcher, or was there help from a book/Grandpa? I can name maybe three birds off the top of my head by recognition, but after that, I start making it up!And I’ll have to try the fruit cake, I’ve never had it before. I wonder how it would taste with a glaze like the kind that go on cinnamon rolls?

  13. Noelle says:

    I just have to write because I’m filled with nostalgia over your white kitty mug! I had the same mug when I lived in my first apartment in 1989. And to think that I live in Ontario, Canada and you live a world apart in Australia!

  14. Rosalie says:

    Thank you so much for your delightful word pictures.

  15. A little Gran Marnier in the cake really brings out the fruit

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