Wednesday, 16 December 2015

Low Potassium Christmas Cake

I have mentioned my grandmother's low potassium diet in the past; I made her a Simnel Cake for Easter gone.  This is the Christmas Cake I have made this year with the guidance of the British Dietetic Association.

This cake also boasts health benefits to anyone without chronic kidney disease; there is no salt, it is relatively low in sugar, and has no saturated fat added.  It has less alcohol than my usual Christmas cakes too. It is also very nice.

There is no need to add the two colours of fondant icing.  My grandmother always loved marzipan and misses it, so I include the yellow icing layer to fool the eye and add almond essence to the mix for a safe marzipanny flavour.  Renal recipes from respected sources use almond essence, such as this Christmas Cake recipe from dieticians via Kidney Matters and on which I based my very first kidney-friendly fruit cake.  With much respect and thanks to the source, this version is preferred at Acorn Towers in its much evolved form to suit our own tastes and in making it even better nutritionally without harming the cake; in fact, the oil for eggs and butter makes a moister lighter cake.

How we made this year's low potassium Christmas Cake:

300g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp ground mixed spice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
100g glace cherries, roughly chopped
100g mixed peel
150ml mild vegetable oil
1 shot of dark rum
150ml water
1 tsp concentrated lemon juice from a bottle
A squeeze of orange juice - around 1 tbsp - should you have any (I keep wedges of orange in the freezer and just gouge about 1 tbsp of the frozen flesh out)
1/2 tsp almond essence

To decorate:
yellow ready-to-roll fondant icing
white ready-to-roll fondant icing

Mix the flour, baking powder and spices.  In a well in the centre of the mixture tip the cherries and peel.  Mix the liquids then pour these into the well.  Combine the batter well.

Turn the mixture into a loaf tin lined with greaseproof baking paper.

Bake at 165C for 2 hours.

Once cooled, lift out using the baking paper for ease.

After resting it for a day, warm the marmalade before brushing it over the top of the cake.  Roll out the yellow icing and place on to of the cake; trim as you feel necessary (you might remember, neatness in this area is not something I am concerned with.) Set aside for another day.

The next day, repeat the last step with the white fondant icing.

Christmas Cakes in loaf form make such lovely gifts when wrapped with cellophane and ribbon.

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