Don't drink all the cider - bake with it!
Mulled drinks were traditionally made by plunging a red hot poker into a vessel filled with alcohol and mulling spices, and stirring until the spicy flavours were thoroughly infused.
You might not have a red hot poker to hand, but luckily, mulled cider is just as easy to make in a saucepan. And when you do, be sure to save a cupful for this deliciously fruity cake, which is perfect as a post gardening reward with a refreshing cup of tea.
MULLED CIDER AND WALNUT CAKE
160ml mulled cider
175g light brown soft sugar
175g soft butter
2 eggs, beaten
200g self raising flour
½ tsp baking powder
¼ tsp mixed spice
¼ tsp cinnamon
25 chopped walnuts
50g sieved icing sugar
Preheat oven to 180 /160 fan/gas 6 and grease and line a square 20cm tin.
Put the sultanas and cider into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Stir well, turn the heat off, cover and leave for an hour or so, stirring occasionally until they have absorbed most of the liquid.
Beat the butter with the sugar until pale and fluffy then beat in the eggs, adding a little of the flour if it starts to curdle.
Mix the flour, baking powder and spices together and gradually add it to the cake batter. Stir through the sultanas and any liquid still in the saucepan. The mixture will be quite wet.
Pour into the tin and smooth, then scatter the chopped walnuts evenly over the top.
Bake for 45-50 minutes, until a cake tester comes out clean.
Leave to cool in the tin on a cooling rack. Mix the cider and icing sugar together and drizzle over the cake.