Beetroot, Chocolate & Stout Christmas Cake


Smash up the beetroot while it is still in the packet with a rolling pin. Place the dried fruit and beetroot into a very large mixing bowl and pour over the stout. Stir and leave, covered, for at least 2 hours.

Preheat the oven to 160 degrees. Line a 23cm cake tin with a double layer of baking paper.

Cream the butter and sugar, then gradually add the eggs and vanilla. Once combined, mix into the fruit mixture. Stir to combine. Add the marmalade, orange juice and rind, and chocolate and combine. Finally add the flour and stir until just combined.

Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, let it settle then drop a tablespoon of water onto the top of the mixture and use it to smooth down the surface. Wrap two layers of baking paper around the cake tin with the ends tucked under the tin and place carefully in the oven.

Check the cake after 2. hours with a skewer, if it comes out cleanish it is done. If not put back in for another 30 minutes. The skewer might have melted chocolate on it and that’s fine as long as it isn’t raw mixture.

When the cake is cooked, remove from the oven and cool in its tin covered in a teatowel. Leave for at least a few hours. Once removed from the tin, the cake will store well in the fridge for up to a month.

Simply pour a good glug of Cointreau on top of the cake, wrap in gladwrap and put in a container. The cake tastes even better as it ages. Every so often check it is still moist and add more Cointreau if not.

Happy Christmas!