Updated: Dec 10, 2020
Trini Black Cake- This is a rich rum cake that's made and served in most Trinidad and Tobago and Caribbean homes during the Christmas season (also served at some weddings).
It is a decadent, almost pudding-like cake made mainly of 'soaked fruits'. Soaked fruits simply means a variety of dried fruits that are minced, then soaked over a period of time, in rum and cherry brandy (the alcohol can vary). The rich, moist fruits are added to the cake batter then folded with browning (another main ingredient). The browning is a thick syrup made from "burning" brown sugar (cooking brown sugar and water until it is thick, dark and caramelized) and gives the cake its dark colour. After the cake is baked, its poked, then finished with a drizzle of liqueur.
The wonderful thing about this super scrumptious and indulgent cake; the alcohol acts as a preservative, so you can display this delightful cake all through the season. Simply decorate it with some extra soaked fruit, a few sliced cherries and a sprinkle of nuts. To make it even merrier, enjoy a slice with a glass of sorrel ponche de creme.
Yield approximately 5 (6inch) cakes
For The Soaked Fruits
1 1/2 Lbs. Raisins
1 1/2 Lbs. Prunes, pitted
1 1/2 Lbs. Currants
6 Ounces Citron (preserved minced rinds from citrus fruits), this can be purchased in most groceries in the dried fruit section.
3 Cups Marachino Cherries (syrup drained)
1 Bottle (750ml) Rum
1 Bottle (750ml) Cherry Brandy
Mince raisins, prunes and currants in a food processor, until the fruits are fine and minced. Note: If you blend too much, it can result into a paste.
Add the minced fruits to a glass jar with the Citron and cherries. Then, using a metal spoon, fold the ingredients together.
Now pour the cherry brandy and rum into the minced fruits, and fold well to combine the alcohol. Or, you can add half the alcohol, allow to sit overnight, then stir in the remainder of alcohol the following day.
Allow the jar of fruits to soak and marinate in the alcohol for a minimum of 2 weeks. Note: Because the alcohol acts as a preservative, these fruits can stay sealed, and stored on the counter for long periods of time. There is also a quicker version where you can simmer your fruits in the alcohol, if you need them right away. Also, the alcohol acts as a preservative, so these fruits can stay sealed, and stored on the counter for long periods of time.
For The Cake
6 Cups All Purpose Flour
4 1/2 Cups Brown Sugar
2 Tbl Baking Soda
3 Tbl Baking Powder
1 1/2 Cups Almond Milk (or sub for another non-dairy milk)
2 Cups Coconut Oil
2 Cups West Indian Browning For Cakes (burnt brown sugar)
2 Tbl Apple Cider Vinegar
1 Tbl Almond Extract
1 1/2 Cups Chopped Walnuts (or sub for almonds, cashews or pecans)
Preheat oven to 350°f.
Sift flour into a bowl with baking soda and baking powder. In a separate bowl, stir together milk and vinegar and allow to sit while you get the other ingredients ready.
In a separate bowl, add brown sugar, oil, almond extract, and browning, then stir until well combined.
Now, scoop and fold in the soaked fruits. When the fruits are well combined, add the walnuts then slowly add the flour while folding into the fruit batter.
Prepare baking dishes by lining them with parchment paper or grease them with coconut oil and a dusting of flour.
Bake at 350°f for 40 minutes then reduce the heat to 350°f and bake for approximately 20-25 minutes, you can check to see when they're ready by sticking them with a toothpick, when the stick comes out clean, the cakes are fully baked and ready to come out the oven.
While the cakes are still warm, gently poke them with the toothpick, then pour amaretto (choose a substitute or mix rum and almond extract together) over the cakes. Allow to cool before removing from the pans.
For decorating the cakes, I used some extra soaked fruits that were left in the jar, mixed it with, maple syrup, pecans, sliced cherries and extra raisins, then topped . You can also use marzipan for decorating your cakes.