Christmas Baking Tips

Friday 10th Dec 2021 |

Tis the season… to bake!

Christmas is a time for good food and wonderful company, so why not bake something extraordinary for everyone to enjoy?

To help make sure your bakes and the festive period goes without a hitch, Clare Marriage, Founder of Doves Farm, the UK’s number one organic flour brand, has shared her top tips on making and preparing Christmas classics and creating vegan alternatives to festive favourites.

Clare has shared helpful hints on how to feed and store a Christmas cake, how to flame a Christmas pudding and how to make vegan mincemeat and, if you’re in need of more recipe inspiration, you can visit

How to Feed and Store a Christmas Cake

Christmas baking tips

Equipment: skewer or BBQ stick, cake syringe, greaseproof or baking parchment and kitchen foil

Free from Gluten, Egg, Soya, Wheat, Dairy, Nuts

Vegetarian, Vegan, Without crystal sugar


Fruit Cake of Your Choice

Alcohol Feed

Choose a strong spirit for feeding the fruit cake such as rum, brandy, whisky, orange liqueur, cherry brandy or amaretto


To Feed the Cake

1. Unwrap your cake, turn it upside down and peel off any paper.
2. Using a skewer or BBQ stick, prick a series of holes all over the bottom of the cake.
3. Fill a cake syringe with 10ml of your chosen alcohol.
4. Put the tip of the syringe into each hole and press a tiny amount of alcohol into each one.
5. Wrap the cake in greaseproof paper or baking parchment then wrap it in kitchen foil.
6. For storage, wrap the cake in a second layer of foil or in an airtight tin.
7. You can repeat the feeding process every couple of weeks for three or four feeds. However, if the cake makes the work surface damp, appears wet or stodgy, discontinue feeding.

To Serve the Cake

1. Leave your cake for a couple of weeks after its last feed.
2. The cake can be served naked.
3. For traditional marzipan and fondant icing, spread warm apricot jam over the top and cover with a layer of marzipan. Leave for about a day for the marzipan to become firm then cover with fondant icing and adding any decoration.
4. Once cut, celebration cakes will store well if wrapped and kept in an airtight container.
5. Fruit cake also freezes well.
6. To serve an iced fruit cake that has been stored for a long time, unwrap it and remove the old icing and marzipan. Check the cake still tastes good, then cover with fresh marzipan and icing.

How to Make Vegan Mincemeat

Christmas baking tipsMakes 2 jars

Equipment: saucepan and sterilized jars if used

Free from Gluten, Egg, Soya, Wheat, Dairy, Nuts

Vegetarian, Vegan


150g grated apple
1 tbsp orange rind
6 tbsp orange juice
100g coconut oil
50g brown sugar
250g mixed dried fruit and peel
2 tsp mixed spice


1. Peel, core and coarsely grate the apple into a saucepan.
2. Finely grate the orange rind into the pan, and add the orange juice.
3. Add the coconut oil and sugar and put the pan over a gentle heat.
4. Simmer for 8-10 minutes, until the apple starts to collapse into the syrup.
5. Remove the pan from the heat and add the mixed dried fruit, peel and mixed spice.
6. Stir to combine and leave to cool.
7. Spoon the mincemeat into sterilized jars and refrigerate for up to a couple of weeks. OR store in a freezer container until required.
8. Use the mincemeat as per your recipe.

Try out this vegan mincemeat in the White Spelt Vegan Mince Pies

How to Flame a Christmas Pudding

Christmas baking tipsEquipment: saucepan and lighter


Christmas Pudding of Your Choice

Spirit Flame

Choose an alcohol with a high spirit content such as rum, brandy or whisky.


Remove any wrapping, parchment paper, cling film or kitchen foil from your hot pudding.
Put a warm, heatproof serving plate on top of the hot pudding, carefully invert it and let the pudding slide out onto the plate.
Keep warm until serving.
Put 3-4 tablespoons of your chosen spirit into a small saucepan and wait until you are ready to flame the pudding.
Heat the saucepan gently until the spirit is very hot.
Remove the pan from the heat and immediately pour the hot spirit over the warm pudding.
Quickly and carefully ignite the spirit with a lighter.
Tilt the serving plate to one side and carefully spoon any spare alcohol back over the pudding. The flame will disappear when all the alcohol has burnt away.