Guinness Fruit Cake

By: Sally James



  • 1 pound mixed dried fruit, (raisins, currants, prunes, blond raisins, cranberries)
  • 1 cup orange juice or sherry
  • 1/2 pound butter
  • 2 cups brown sugar
  • Grated rind of 1 orange
  • 2 tablespoons treacle or golden syrup
  • 300 milliliters warm Guinness beer
  • 1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
  • 4 eggs
  • 4 cups plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon each nutmeg, allspice and cinnamon
  • 3 ounces dried candied ginger or peel
  • 2 tablespoons whisky



  1. Cover fruit with orange juice and allow to macerate overnight. Drain well.
  2. Preheat oven to 335°F. Grease and line a 9-inch cake pan with brown paper or parchment.
  3. Using electric beaters, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the rind and treacle and beat again until incorporated.
  4. In a separate large bowl, combine the Guinness with the soda and carefully beat in the eggs.
  5. Sift the flour and spices together, and gently fold a quarter into the creamed butter and sugar. Add a third of the Guinness mixture, and continue to add remainder of flour and Guinness alternately, ending with flour.
  6. Stir in the macerated dried fruit and the ginger, and mix well.
  7. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 1 hour, then reduce oven to low then cook for a further 1 - 1/ 2 hours or until a skewer inserted in the center comes out clean.
  8. Take out of oven, immediately sprinkle with the whisky, cover top with a sheet of parchment and then wrap a layer of newspaper and a towel. Allow to cool like this. (This cake is best stored for at least 1 week before eating to allow flavors to develop and will get even better after a month. Store in a sealed container in a cool spot for up to 3 months.)