A show-stopping combination of two classic bakes, this bundt-shaped take on the traditional French yeast cake is packed full of nuts and dried fruit, soaked with a boozy rum syrup and topped with pillowy cream and snow-dusted berries for a gorgeous festive centrepiece.
- In a large bowl, using an electric hand whisk, mix the flour, sugar, yeast and salt. Add the milk and an egg, and whisk until combined. One by one, add the remaining eggs, whisking in between. Add the butter gradually, whisking until the batter is smooth and shiny. It should look like a mix between bread and cake batter.
- Cover the bowl with clingfilm and leave in a warm place until doubled in size. Once risen, mix briefly to punch down the dough, then add the remaining cake ingredients. Whisk until just combined. Grease a 2-2.5ltr bundt tin with butter. Pour the mix into the tin, cover with clingfilm and leave to rise again for about 1 hr.
- Meanwhile, prepare the syrup. Put the sugar and 200ml (7fl oz) water into a small pan over a low heat, and stir to dissolve the sugar. Once the sugar has dissolved, increase the heat and bubble for 5-7 mins. Pour the syrup into a jug and leave to cool. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to gas 4, 180°C, fan 160°C.
- Once the dough has risen to the top of the tin, bake for 30-35 mins, until golden and a skewer comes out clean. Cool in the tin for 10 mins before transferring to a wire rack on a tray to cool completely.
- Add the rum to the cooled sugar syrup, stirring to combine. Pour it slowly over the cooled cake and allow to soak in. Lift up the cake and dip the bottom into the syrup on the tray below, if you like.
- Put the cake on a serving tray. Top with the whipped cream, then decorate with the berries and dust with icing sugar. Serve any excess syrup alongside the cake.
Spiced rum: When making the syrup, simmer the sugar and water with 1 cinnamon stick, 5 whole cloves and 2 star anise. Leave to cool, then strain before stirring in the rum.
Ginger and mixed peel: Swap the currants for finely diced crystallised ginger and the dried cranberries for mixed peel.
Raisin and cinnamon: Switch the currants for raisins and the orange zest for 1 tsp cinnamon.
To flambé your cake, put it on a heatproof tray, heat 100ml (3 1/2fl oz) rum in a pan until hot, but not boiling, then light a long match and set the rum on fire. Pour the lit rum over the cake and leave until the flame settles. Cut into slices and serve with the vanilla ice cream and the remaining syrup.*
To make it gluten-free, use gluten-free yeast and Doves Farm Gluten & Wheat Free White Bread Flour.
Make sure to grease your tin generously so that the cake releases easily. You can also carefully run a knife around the sides to help it come out.
Your milk should only be warm to the touch - it will kill the yeast if it's too hot.
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*Flambé involves an open flame, so use extreme caution. Keep clothing, hair and other flammable objects away from the pan.