These mini fruit cupcakes are a great way to get into the festive mood, plus you can get creative with the decorations! Make these rich fruity cakes topped with Christmas designs for a festive Christmas party, or make them as a gift to take round to friends or family. Everyone will love the time and effort you've got to to make them and they really are worth the extra bit of effort!
- 500g raisins
- 200g glacé orange, chopped
- 300g sultanas (golden raisins)
- 150g glacé cherries, quartered
- 150g butter
- 165g soft brown sugar
- 1 tbsp finely grated orange zest
- 250ml freshly squeezed orange juice
- 125ml Grand Marnier
- 2 eggs, lightly beaten
- 2 tbsp orange marmalade
- 90g plain flour
- 90g self-raising flour
- 55g ground almonds
- 1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
- 2 tbsp orange marmalade, strained
- 500g ready-rolled soft icing
- 1 egg white
- 165g icing sugar
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- Red and green food colouring
- Silver cachous and edible decorations
Preheat the oven to 160°C/ 315°F/Gas Mark 2–3. Line two 12-hole muffin tins with red, green and silver paper cases.
Combine the raisins, glacé orange, sultanas, glacé cherries, butter, brown sugar, orange zest and orange juice in a large saucepan and stir over low heat until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat, stir in the Grand Marnier and allow to cool. When cold, stir in the egg and marmalade, then add the combined flours, ground almonds and nutmeg and mix well.
Spoon the mixture into the prepared tins. Moisten your fingers with water and flatten the surface of each cake. Tap the tins firmly on the work surface to release any air bubbles. Bake for 30 minutes, or until a skewer inserted in the centre of a cake comes out clean.
Remove from the oven, cover each tin with baking paper and wrap in a clean tea towel (dish towel). Allow the cakes to cool, then brush the tops lightly with the strained marmalade.
Roll out the icing until 3 mm ( 1/8 inch) thick and cut out twenty-four 6 cm (2 ½ inch) rounds. Place a round on top of each cake and smooth.
Whisk the egg white in a bowl until foamy. Gradually beat in the icing sugar and add just enough lemon juice to make a smooth icing that holds its shape. Divide the icing in half. Colour one batch green and the other red, then spoon each colour into a piping (icing) bag fitted with a 2 mm ( 1/16 inch) plain nozzle or into a zip-lock bag with a tiny corner snipped off.
Top tip for making Festive fruit cupcakes
Pipe two green stripes (to represent the tree trunk) onto two cakes and pipe assorted green and red Christmas designs onto the remaining cakes and arrange into a tree shape to serve.