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Royal Christmas Cake

Filled with candied fruits and nuts, then topped with snowy white frosting, this cake is a memorable Christmas dessert recipe.

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  • Makes: 16 servings
  • Prep: 45 mins
  • Chill: 1 week
  • Cool: 2 hrs

Royal Christmas Cake



  1. Grease bottom and sides of two 9x1-1/2-inch round baking pans. Line bottoms with waxed paper. Grease paper; sprinkle bottom and sides of pans lightly with flour; set aside. Stir together flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, nutmeg, and cloves. Stir in currants, raisins, fruits and peels, cherries, and almonds. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl beat eggs slightly with a fork. Add granulated sugar, butter, 1/2 cup rum, and lemon juice; stir until combined. Stir egg mixture into fruit mixture; pour into prepared pans.
  3. Bake in a 300 degree F oven for 1 to 1-1/4 hours or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. (If necessary, cover pans loosely with foil after 1 hour to prevent overbrowning.) Cool in pans on wire racks 20 minutes; loosen edges. Remove cakes from pans. Cool thoroughly on wire racks.
  4. Wrap layers separately in 100-percent cotton cheesecloth moistened with additional rum, brandy, or juice. Wrap with foil or place in large self-sealing plastic bags. Store in the refrigerator for 1 to 2 weeks. Remoisten cheesecloth with a little additional rum if it becomes dry.
  5. To assemble, up to 2 hours before serving, unwrap cake layers. Place 1 cake layer, top side down, on a serving plate. Spread with half of the almond paste. (Or, if paste is too thick to spread, divide in half and shape into balls. Place each ball between 2 sheets of waxed paper; flatten slightly. With a rolling pin, roll each portion into a 9-1/2-inch circle; trim to form a 9-inch circle. Remove top sheet of paper from 1 circle; invert onto cake. Remove remaining paper).
  6. Spread about 3/4 cup of the Royal Icing over almond paste on first cake layer. Add second cake layer, top side up; spread or top with remaining almond paste. Frost top and sides of cake with remaining Royal Icing. If desired, garnish with bay leaves (do not eat). Let stand at least 30 minutes to allow Icing to set. Serve within 2 hours of frosting. Makes 16 servings.

From the Test Kitchen


Use a grinder, blender, or food processor to grind nuts.

Royal Icing



  1. Combine powdered sugar, water, meringue powder, and vanilla. Beat with an electric mixer on high speed 7 to 10 minutes or until very stiff. Use immediately; cover icing in bowl with damp paper towel or with plastic wrap while working to prevent drying. Makes about 3-1/2 cups.

Nutrition Facts (Royal Christmas Cake)

    Per serving:
  • 565 kcal cal.,
  • 16 g fat
  • (6 g sat. fat,
  • 76 mg chol.,
  • 139 mg sodium,
  • 98 g carb.,
  • 2 g fiber,
  • 7 g pro.
  • Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet



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