Wholefood Christmas Cake

Wholefood Christmas Cake resize
I know I am a little after the fact with this recipe, but I managed to perfect it a little too late for Christmas… and thought some of you may still be in the spirit of the season and looking for something delicious and nutritious to spice up the rest of the holidays. This recipe tastes like the real deal, if you did not know, you would never think that it is anything but good old-fashioned Christmas Cake.
I use white haricot beans (sometimes called small white beans), which are allowed on the GAPS diet, for this recipe. I soak my beans in salt water for 12 hours, then change the salt water, soak another 12 hours, change the salt water again and boil until tender. If you do not tolerate beans, or prefer, I think red lentils and chickpeas would also work well. Chickpeas are not allowed on GAPS though.
I avoid using the fruit cake mixes available in shops as they tend to have sugar and nasty additives. If you can find a nice clean pre-mixed fruit cake mix, go right ahead and use it to make life easier!
I store this cake in the fridge, and it keeps well at least a week. As with most wholefood baked goods, I would be careful of storing at room temperature, as they often grown mould more easily as they are so nutritious. I plan to experiment with how well this cake keeps at room temperature, and will get back to you on that…if I can manage not to eat it all up too quickly.


180g butter
1 cup pitted dates
4 eggs
1½ cup cooked white beans
½ tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground ginger
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
¼ tsp cloves
1½ cup raisins
1½ cup sultanas
1 cup currants
Rind of 2 lemons, finely chopped
Virgin organic coconut oil to coat fruit
½ cup chopped pecan nuts or walnuts
75ml brandy (brandy is not GAPS legal, so if you are on GAPS replace with Whisky or another GAPS legal option)


    In a small saucepan, melt the butter over low heat. Once melted, put the dates in the melted butter and allow to steep for a few minutes for the dates to soften and cool.
    Place the melted butter and dates, cooked beans, eggs, spices and bicarbonate of soda in a food processor and process to a smooth paste. It will look quite runny, don’t worry about that.
    In a separate bowl, mix the dried fruit, chopped lemon rind and nuts. Lightly coat them all in virgin organic coconut oil until all the pieces of fruit are nicely separated and not sticking together in clumps. This will help to distribute the fruit evenly through the cake and stop if from all sinking to the bottom.
    Gently mix the bean mixture into the dried fruit mixture, add the brandy and mix well.
    Line a 20cm round tin, or similarly sized square tin, with a layer of baking paper. Leave the sides of the paper long enough to fold over and forma double layer of paper on top of the cake. Pour the batter into the cake tin and then close the paper over the top to form a double layer of paper over the top of the cake. You can secure the paper with sticky tape or staples.
    Bake the cake for 2 hours on 150 degrees C with the grill turned off. Remove the cake from the oven and leave the paper closed over the cake as it cools. If you would like to make a smaller or larger cake, you can adjust the cooking time accordingly. If you split this recipe into two smaller cakes, bake half the time, i.e. 1 hour. Similarly, if you double the size of the cake, double the baking time and so on.

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