By now we will all have used up our Christmas leftovers, or perhaps relegated them to the freezer for future use.
There is one food item however, that will keep for several weeks and still be good to eat! If you wish, however, you could give it a makeover! The traditional fruit cake which most of us still enjoy over the Christmas period, is actually extremely versatile and can be used in many different ways.
Here are just a few ideas for using up your Christmas Cake leftovers:-
1. Ice Cream Fruit Cake
A favourite of mine is to add ice cream – For a quick and easy, spur of the moment pud, mix crumbled fruit cake into slightly softened ice cream (I prefer just plain vanilla, as there are enough flavours from the fruit cake itself), pop back into the freezer for 15 minutes, remove and enjoy!
Alternatively, use a cake tin lined with cling film, slice the fruitcake thinly. Place layers of cake (minus icing) and softened ice cream alternately into the tin. Freeze for 30 minutes, turn out, removing the cling film, and serve.
2. Baked Alaska
If you are feeling a little more adventurous, create a delicious Baked Alaska! The following quantities will make up to four mini Alaskas or one large, serving four portions. You will need
1 slice (minimum of ½” thick) fruitcake per mini Alaska / 4-6 slices per large Alaska (minus marzipan and icing)
Juice of ½ to 1 orange
2 egg whites
100g caster sugar
1 scoop ice cream per mini Alaska / 4-6 scoops for large Alaska
1. Pre heat oven to 210 degrees C (fan).
2. Place fruit cake slices into an ovenproof dish. If making large Alaska, make sure all slices are pushed together with no gaps. Sprinkle with orange juice and leave to soak in for a few minutes.
3. Make meringue by whisking the egg whites until a stiff peak consistency. Add ½ sugar and whisk in. Fold in the remainder of sugar with a metal spoon.
4. Place scoops of ice cream onto cake slices and immediately spread the meringue over the top ensuring that it covers the ice cream completely.
5. Place into oven for approx. 4-5 minutes until meringue has coloured.
6. Serve immediately.
3. Fridge Cake
Another easy recipe is for a deliciously fruity Fridge Cake, and no baking required!
Ingredients are as follows:-
200g leftover Christmas cake
100g biscuits of choice (amaretto or biscotti are great! Otherwise use your favourite!)
75g leftover nuts of choice (optional)
1. Melt chocolate and butter in a bowl over a pan of hot water.
2. Break up the cake and biscuits, and roughly chop the nuts and marshmallows into chunks. Add to chocolate and mix until well coated.
3. Spoon into approx. 8-9” square tin, greased and lined.
4. Chill until set, then cut into squares.
4. Cake Pops
If you have some chocolate, or candy melts/buttons left over after Christmas, why not transform your cake into cake pops? Simply mix the cake with its marzipan, minus the icing, together well. Shape into balls as smooth as possible (the marzipan will keep the mixture together) and add a lolly stick. Melt the chocolate and cover the pops well. Add a few sprinkles and leave to set.
Lastly, there is always the Christmas favourite – make a trifle, using leftover cake soaked in orange juice or liqueur for the base instead of sponge cake.