Every Caribbean nation has their version of Black Cake, a rum cake made at Christmas. I'm trying as much as possible to have a traditional Guyanese Christmas, so Black Cake was a necessity.
This is the recipe I used:
1 lb butter
2 lbs brown sugar
1 tsp lemon essence
2 tsp almond essence
2 tsp vanilla
4 tsp baking powder
2 tsp all spice
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup boiling water
1 lb pitted prunes
1 lb raisins
1 bottle cherry brandy
2 bottles Guyana Rum ( I used Lemon Hart)
2 tbsp Angostura Bitters ( found at your local liquor store)
7 days before the cake is made, chop up prunes, raisins and currants. Mix together in a large container (with a lid) and add Angostura Bitters, 1 bottle of rum and cherry brandy. Place in a blender and blend until thick and chunky. Add more rum if you need to for the blending. I damaged 3 blenders because I didn't add enough liquid. Place in container and cover. Keep in a cool place.
Place 1 lb of sugar in a pot on medium heat. You have to stir constantly as the sugar caramelizes. Once the sugar turns dark brown and like a syrup, add water slowly. I made the mistake of adding the water all at once so it was lumpy.
Cream the butter and 1 lb sugar. Add eggs one at a time. Add lemon essence, almond essence and vanilla. Add flour, baking powder, all spice and nut meg. Add fruit and caramelized sugar.
Pre-heat oven to 250F. I was worried about the cake because I thought this was too low but the cake was fine. Pour mixture into greased cake pan. Bake for 3 hours. Once cake is finished, pour the last bottle of rum on top. Once cooled, store cake in a refrigerator.