Haute Cabrière Ratafia Christmas Cake Recipe

Christmas fruitcake with Ratafia

Haute Cabrière Ratafia Christmas Cake Recipe

It's the season and nothing says is better than homemade fruitcake.

The festive season has many traditions, one of them being the fruitcake! These traditional cakes make for lovely gifts, and the scent immediately announces that Christmas has arrived!

Haute Cabrière Ratafia Christmas Cake with almonds

The Pierre Jourdan Ratafia is 100% Chardonnay, and fortified with brandy. This wine can be enjoyed before a meal, as an apéritif and we even suggest adding it to your drinks trolley for something refreshing over ice, whenever the mood strikes! 

This liquid gold was the inspiration between us teaming up with Drizzle and Dip’s Sam Linsell to create this simple recipe for a festive Christmas cake. 

If you are no baker, then our Bakery & Deli have put a spin on this cake and it is available to buy on your next visit or pre order for collection. 

Ratafia Christmas cake & bottle of Ratafia | R150 or buy the 220g cake for R60. 

Pierre Jourdan Ratafia Christmas cake
Pierre Jourdan Ratafia


For the fruit to soak

  • 140 g raisins
  • 140 g sultanas
  • 120 g dried cranberries
  • 120 g soft dried apricots, roughly chopped
  • 120 g candied citrus peel
  • 180 ml Pierre Jourdan Ratafia & more for drizzling over the top


For the cake

  • 225 g butter at room temperature
  • 330 g sugar
  • ¼ cup golden syrup or light corn syrup
  • 1 tsp salt if using unsalted butter, otherwise a pinch
  • ¼ tsp ground ginger
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground all spice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • Grated zest of an orange
  • 5 large free-range eggs
  • 445 g cake or all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup milk
  • 200 g glazed cherries cut in half
  • 200 g Pecan nuts, roughly chopped
  • Blanched almonds to decorate, optional


For the fruit to soak | Place all the fruit in a bowl and cover with Ratafia and allow to soak overnight at room temperature. Give it a stir every now and again if you remember.

For the cake | Preheat the oven to 150°C, line cake tins with baking paper on the bottom and sides.

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until well combined. Add the eggs one at a time ensuring they are well mixed after each addition. Add the syrup, salt, spices and orange zest and mix until well combined. Sift the flour and baking powder together and alternate adding this with the milk until well combined. Add all the soaked fruit (with any liquid), cherries and nuts and briefly mix until well combined. Scrape down the bowl by hand ensuring all the fruit is evenly distributed.

Dived the batter between the 2 cake tins and smooth out the top. Decorate with whole blanched almonds if you are using and bake for 1.5 to 2 hours depending on the size of your pans. The cake is done when it is golden brown and firm to the touch. Insert a sharp knife into the middle and if it comes out clean it is ready. Bake a little longer if it needs to as ovens do vary. Loosely cover with tin foil from about half way through if you feel it needs it to prevent over browning.

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