Better-for-you fruit cake

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There's nothing better than a tasty afternoon tea treat! Source: Getty.

It’s often hard to find a dessert that’s both delicious and a healthier option than other sweet treats, but this recipe combines the two perfectly! With limited sugar and an ingredient list almost completely made up of fruits, this cake is a great choice when you’re in the mood for something a bit lighter. It’s super easy to make and, if you want to add or remove any fruits, then dried apricots or dates are easy replacements!


500g sultanas
1 x 375g pkt raisins, coarsely chopped
1 x 300g pkt currants
250g pkt figs, coarsely chopped
125ml (1/2 cup) brandy
125ml (1/2 cup) apple juice
Melted butter, to grease
200g 60 per cent less fat margarine
55g (1/4 cup, firmly packed) brown sugar
2 eggs, at room temperature
2 egg whites, at room temperature
115g (1/3 cup) orange marmalade
300g (2 cups) wholemeal plain flour
75g (1/2 cup) wholemeal self-raising flour
1 teaspoon mixed spice
80ml (1/3 cup) brandy, extra


  1. Combine sultanas, raisins, figs, currants, apple juice and brandy in large glass. Cover with plastic wrap. Set aside, stirring occasionally, for 6 hours to macerate.
  2. Preheat oven to 150C. Grease round 22cm cake pan with melted butter. Line base and sides with 2 layers of non-stick baking paper and leave overhang.
  3. Use electric beater to beat margarine and sugar in bowl. Add eggs and egg whites, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition until combined. Add marmalade and beat until well combined. Add combined flour and mixed spice. Fold until just combined. Stir in sultana mixture. Spoon into prepared pan. Tap pan on the bench top to settle the mixture.
  4. Wrap outside of pan with 3 layers of newspaper, rising slightly higher than the baking paper. Secure with kitchen string. Bake, covering with foil if necessary to prevent over browning, for 3 hours or until skewer inserted into centre comes out clean.
  5. Pour extra brandy over hot cake. Wrap pan in clean tea towel. Set aside overnight to cool completely. Serve.

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