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Black Cake

Black Cake



I had the best time making this Black Cake. This Caribbean cake is typically served on special occasions and is also known as Christmas cake, wedding cake and rum cake. While there are different versions I came up with this one at the request of my friend from Trinidad. The cake is super moist filled with rum-soaked fruit and some citrus accents of lime and candied orange peel. It all starts with the making of the crucial ingredient Burnt Sugar Syrup. I know that might sound a little scary at first but it really isn’t at all. It’s almost like making a simple syrup only you melt the sugar first then add the water. The smell and taste is something I’ve never had before.  It’s similar to molasses but with an added smokey sweetness. The burnt sugar syrup, also known as “browning”, gives the cake that rich dark color. While it’s best to soak the fruits for days, it is possible to do this step overnight. And all that liquor keeps the cake preserved so you can enjoy it even months later. One of my favorite things about baking for others is learning about their culture. I was thrilled to hear not only did my friend love the cake but so did her mother!



Black Cake Fruits

                                           Fruits-chopped and ready for rum!


Black Cake Batter

                                           Don’t worry-batter is pale in color to start.

Black Cake
Recipe type: Dessert

You need to start soaking the fruit days ahead with this cake but it’s really worth it!
Fruit Mixture
  • 3½ cups dark rum
  • 2 cups cherry brandy
  • dash Angostura bitters
  • 1 lb. prunes
  • 1 lb. currants
  • ½ lb. raisins
  • ½ lb. candied cherries
  • ¼ lb. candied orange peel
  • 5 cups rum-soaked fruit
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 6 large eggs, room temperature
  • 2 teaspoons almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon lime zest
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ⅛ teaspoon allspice
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg
  • dash salt
  • ⅓ cup burnt sugar syrup
  • ½ cup dark rum

Fruit Mixture
  1. In a food processor, process prunes, cherries and orange peel into small chunks.
  2. Add to raisins and currants in a large bowl, preferably glass.
  3. Add rum, brandy and bitters and stir well.
  4. Cover and leave in a cool spot 3-5 days (the longer the better!)
  1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees.
  2. Prepare pan with double-lined parchment and cooking spray.
  3. In a bowl, cream together butter and sugar.
  4. Add eggs, one at a time.
  5. Add almond extract and lime zest. Mix well.
  6. In another bowl, mix flour, baking powder, spices and salt.
  7. Gradually add dry ingredients to wet ingredients.
  8. Stir in 5 cups rum-soaked fruit.
  9. Add burnt sugar syrup and stir well.
  10. Pour into prepared pan and bake for 2½ to 3 hours or until center is set.
  11. Once removed from the oven, brush to top with rum.
  12. When cake has cooled, cover and set in a dark place.
  13. Repeat with rum one or two more times.

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