Sultana and Walnut Cake – two types, two recipes

On ABC radio Saturday I was also asked about a sultana and walnut cake.

At the time I gave out the recipe for a boiled version (like a boiled fruit cake, very nice) but here is another. It’s my Nan’s sultana cake, always very popular.

The secret is to boil the sultanas first, then drain them well and cool before incorporating into the cake batter.

My Nan and her family owned a bakery when she was young. Therefore her recipes are always really, really good. I am very privileged indeed to have her handwritten (in fountain pen) recipe book.

This is the cake, baked last night. Once it was mentioned I just had to make one.

One photo above shows the mixing and the other, the cut cake. It’s really best left undisturbed for a couple of days before slicing, but Robert wanted a little something sweet to go with his coffee at morning tea time. Still cut out fine though.

Here is the recipe for the one pictured, followed by the recipe for a boiled fruit cake style version.

Sultana and Walnut Cake

500g sultanas

250g butter

125g sugar

375g plain flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon lemon essence (or 2 teaspoons finely grated lemon rind)

3 eggs

60g roughly chopped walnuts

6 teaspoons boiling water

Turn oven on to 150°C. Grease a 23cm deep-sided round tin and line base with baking paper, grease again.

Place sultanas in a pot, cover with water, bring to the boil and simmer 3 minutes.

Strain off the water and leave the sultanas to cool.

Cream the butter and sugar, the add eggs and beat well.

Fold in the dry ingredients, then the sultanas, essence and boiling water.

Spoon into the prepared tin and bake for approximately 2s½ hours. Allow to cool in the tin.


Boiled Sultana and Walnut Cake

125g butter or margarine

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon mixed spice

2 teaspoons cinnamon

1 cup water

375g sultanas

1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda

2 eggs

1 cup plain flour

1 cup self raising flour

1 cup chopped walnuts

Place the butter, sugar, spices, mixed fruit, bicarbonate of soda and water in a large saucepan.

Bring to the boil and simmer for one minute.

Remove from heat and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

Heat oven to 160°C. Grease a 20cm deep-sided round tin and line base with baking paper, grease again.

Whisk the eggs and add to the sultana mixture, then add the flours and mix until well combined with a metal spoon. Fold in the walnuts. Pour into the prepared tin.

Bake for approximately one hour until a metal skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean. Allow to cool in tin.

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