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Savoring Tradition: A Caribbean Black Cake Recipe

The Caribbean is a region rich in cultural diversity, and one of the best ways to experience its vibrant heritage is through its traditional cuisine. Among the many delectable dishes, the Caribbean Black Cake stands out as a true culinary masterpiece. Also known as "Christmas cake", "rum cake" or "fruitcake," this dessert is a staple during festive seasons, weddings, and other special occasions.

Join us on a culinary journey as we explore the secrets behind this Caribbean Black Cake Recipe and learn how to recreate this indulgent treat in your own kitchen.

Caribbean Black Cake Recipe


For the Cake:

  • 1 pound mixed dried fruits (raisins, currants, prunes, cherries)

  • 1 cup dark rum

  • 1 cup unsalted butter

  • 2 cups brown sugar

  • 6 large eggs

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour

  • 1 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1 teaspoon mixed spice (cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice)

  • 1/2 cup browning (caramelized sugar)

For the Soaking Syrup:

  • 1 cup dark rum

  • 1 cup simple syrup (equal parts sugar and water, dissolved)


  1. Soak the Fruits:

  • Chop the dried fruits and soak them in a bowl with a cup of dark rum. Let it marinate for at least 24 hours, allowing the fruits to absorb the rich flavors.

  1. Prepare the Cake Batter:

  • Preheat your oven to 325°F (165°C).

  • In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy.

  • Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

  • In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and mixed spice.

  • Gradually add the dry ingredients to the butter and sugar mixture, mixing until just combined.

  • Fold in the soaked fruits and browning until evenly distributed.

  1. Bake the Cake:

  • Grease and line a deep cake pan with parchment paper.

  • Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top.

  • Bake for approximately 2 to 2.5 hours or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

  • Allow the cake to cool completely before removing it from the pan.

  1. Soaking Syrup:

  • Combine a cup of dark rum with a cup of simple syrup to create a soaking syrup.

  • Using a skewer or toothpick, poke holes in the cooled cake and generously brush it with the soaking syrup. Allow the cake to absorb the syrup for at least a day, enhancing its richness.

  1. Presentation:

  • The Caribbean Black Cake is traditionally adorned with royal icing, nuts, or additional dried fruits. Get creative with your decorations to add a personal touch.

Bonus: For an extra touch of authenticity, pair your Black Cake with a glass of Sorrel, a vibrant hibiscus tea steeped in spices, another beloved Caribbean tradition.

Baking Your Own Legacy:

Ready to embark on your own Black Cake adventure? Here are some tips:

  • Start early: The fruits need time to soak in rum's magic. Aim for at least a week, though some families soak for months!

  • Don't skimp on the rum: It's not just for flavor; it also acts as a preservative. Use a good-quality rum you wouldn't mind sipping neat.

  • Embrace the darkness: Don't be alarmed by the cake's deep color. It's a sign of its rich molasses and fruit content.

  • Feed your cake: As it ages, drizzle it with additional rum to keep it moist and flavorful.

  • Savor the journey: The anticipation of waiting for the cake to mature is part of the experience.

The Caribbean Black Cake is more than a dessert; it's a celebration of culture, family, and tradition. As you savor each moist and flavorful bite, you'll be transported to the sun-soaked shores and vibrant festivities of the Caribbean. So, gather your ingredients, embrace the culinary journey, and indulge in the joy of creating this timeless masterpiece in your own kitchen. From soaking the fruits in rich rum to the final brush of the decadent soaking syrup, every step is a labor of love that culminates in a slice of Caribbean paradise on your plate.


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