Healthy fruit cake

Preparation time: 20 minutes + soaking overnight

Cooking time: 70 to 85 minutes

Makes: 12 slices

Storage: Covered in the fridge. Double wrap in plastic to freeze.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups sultanas
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 2 tablespoons brandy (optional)
  • 1 tablespoon water (or 3 tablespoons of water or fruit juice if not using brandy)
  • 2 cups raw pumpkin cut into 1cm cubes
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup apple juice
  • 1/2 cup skimmed milk
  • 1/2 cup pecans or walnuts, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice
  • 1 cup white self-raising flour
  • 1 cup wholemeal self-raising flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

Method

  1. Put the sultanas, raisins, brandy and water in a bowl and soak overnight
  2. Preheat the oven to 200°C(180°C fan-forced)
  3. Line the bottom of a 20cm cake tin with foil and spray the foil and sides of the tin with oil
  4. Put the small cubes of pumpkin into a microwave-safe dish, cover and cook on high for 8 - 10 minutes, or until well done
  5. Place the cooked pumpkin in a food processor, blend until smooth and set aside to cool (you will need 1 cup of pumpkin puree - if you have any left over, add it to mashed potato or soup to use it up)
  6. Mix the pumpkin puree, eggs, apple juice and milk together in a large bowl
  7. Add the soaked fruit, nuts and spices
  8. Sift the flours and bicarbonate of soda into the mixture and combine
  9. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and bake for 10 minutes at 200°C
  10. After 10 minutes, turn the heat down to 180°C (160°C fan-forced) and bake for a further 1 to 1 1/4 hours, until browned
  11. Test by inserting a skewer; if it comes out clean turn the cake out onto a rack to cool.