Seasonal Recipe – Dundee Cake

Dec 13, 2017 | Featured Recipes

Dundee Cake is one of my seasonal specialities. It is a much loved cake from the East coast of Scotland so always makes me think of home. My granny used to make this with me when we baked on a Sunday. She used to tell me the tale of how Dundee cakes and marmalade were created. The quirky stories seemed to spark an everlasting fascination in me about the origins of different recipes, this intrigue has enriched my journey as a patissier and I hope will continue to do so.

‘The world-renowned Dundee marmalade was created by a local grocer in the town at the beginning of the 18th century. The story goes that a grocer, James Keillor, took advantage of a Spanish ship in Dundee harbour carrying a cargo of Seville oranges. He bought a large quantity, but because of the sour taste, found he was unable to sell them. Not wishing to waste the fruit, his wife used the oranges to make some preserve. They proved to be so popular that the Dundee public demanded more and the grocer from then on ensured a regular order for Seville oranges. The production of the marmalade resulted in a by-product of orange peel. This is where Scottish ingenuity came into force. Instead of wasting the surplus orange peel, the canny Scots created the recipe for Dundee cake using the orange peel, giving this speciality cake its distinctive flavour.’



170g Plain flour

4g Baking powder

115g Unsalted buttr

85g Demerara sugar

85g Granulated sugar

115g Whole eggs (about 2–3 eggs)

225g Rum-marinated Sultanas

115g Confit Orange (chopped)

Grated zest of 1 orange

1 quantity of Alcohol Syrup (Boil together


To decorate:

1 quantity of Apricot Nappage

4 dried prunes

4 dried apricots

10 dried cranberries

10 dried cherries

2 Confit Orange cut into quarters

1 quantity of Crystallized Pistachios

1 quantity of Crystallized Almonds


You will need:

15cm (6 inch) round cake tin (pan) greased with butter and lightly dusted with flour


First, make the cake:

  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C. Sift together the flour and baking powder into a mixing bowl. Cream the butter and both sugars together in a separate bowl until light and a fluffy consistency. Slowly add the eggs, being careful not to split the mix (if the mixture does begins to split, add a little of the flour).
  2. Take one-quarter of flour and mix it with the Rum-marinated Sultanas, Confit Orange and orange zest in a separate bowl, making sure all the fruits are coated.
  3. Fold the remaining flour into the wet mixture, then fold in the fruits and zest.
  4. Spoon the mixture into the prepared baking tin (pan) and bake for 1.–1. hours. Leave to cool for 10 minutes, then turn out of the tin and soak generously with the Grand Marnier syrup. Leave to cool completely.


To finish:

  1. Melt the Apricot Nappage in a saucepan. Glaze the top of the cake with the nappage and decorate with the dried fruits, Confit Orange and crystallized nuts.



Store in an airtight container and consume within 2 weeks.

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