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Family Recipes, Made Simple!

Print Recipe

Trinidad Black Cake

Servings : Makes 3 x 8 inch round cakes

Equipment needed : 3 round baking pans, hand mixer or stand mixer


2 1/2 Cups prunes, pitted & chopped

2 1/2 Cups raisins

2 1/2 Cups currants

2 1/2 Cups sultanas

1/2 Cup mixed peel

1 1/4 Cup maraschino cherries, chopped

1/2 Cup almonds (optional)

1 1/2 Cups cherry brandy

2 Cups rum

2 Cups unsalted butter, softened

2 Cups sugar (brown or white)

10 Eggs

2 tsp Grated lime peel

2 tsp Vanilla extract

4 Cups all purpose flour

4 tsp Baking powder

2 tsp Cinnamon

1/4 cup browning (more for darkening)

To preserve the cake after baking, soak with: ¼ Cup cherry brandy, ¼ Cup rum and ¼ Cup sherry.


Royal Icing for 1 cake:


4 Egg whites

1 tsp Cream of tartar

7 Cups of icing sugar

1 tsp Lime juice

Hot water for thinning the icing, if needed (about a teaspoon)


  1. Using a stand mixer or hand beater with a bowl, beat the egg whites until stiff peaks form and it gets fluffy.
  2. Add the cream of tartar and continue beating, then add the first 5 cups of icing sugar one cup at a time, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as you go along.
  3. Add the lime juice after the 5th cup of icing sugar and continue beating, add the last 2 cups of icing sugar.
  4. If the icing looks too thick, thin it out by adding some hot water and continue beating.
  5. This icing hardens very quickly, so we recommend icing the cake immediately after making the icing.


    1. Soaking : Using a very large bowl, put your prunes, raisins, currants, sultanas, mixed peel and maraschino cherries inside, mix together with a spoon.
    2. Pour in the cherry brandy and rum and mix together very well, transfer this mixture to a sealed container.  Allow to stand for 3 to 7 days.

To make the black cake : Preheat the oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.

  1. Prepare the round cake pans by lining them on the bottom with parchment paper and spraying with a non-stick baking spray.
  2. Cream the butter and sugar in a large bowl using a hand mixer until fluffy.
  3. Add the eggs one at a time, beating continually, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a spatula as you go along.
  4. Add the grated lime peel and vanilla extract and mix again.
  5. In another bowl, mix together the dry ingredients (flour, baking powder and cinnamon) using a whisk or a spoon.
  6. Then, fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients, little by little.
  7. Mix the soaked fruit mixture into the above batter with a spatula or spoon, until well combined, then add the browning and mix again.
  8. Spoon the prepared batter into the 3 cake pans, spreading it evenly to the sides with a spatula.  The batter should be filled to about halfway up the pans.
  9. Bake in the oven for 1 hour at 250 degrees Fahrenheit, then reduce the temperature to 225 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for another 1 to 1 ½ hours.
  10. Remove from the oven.  Keep the cakes in their cake pans.
  11. To store the cakes for a while before a celebration, you can preserve the cakes by pricking them a few times with a fork, then pour a 1 cup mixture of sherry, cherry brandy & rum straight after baking and let it soak for 12 hours.  During the 12 hours, pour over a little more of the alcohol mixture every couple of hours.
  12. Cover the cakes with foil and let them stay on your countertop (do not refrigerate).
  13. Remove the cakes from the cake tins after the 12 hours have passed.
  14. Ice the cakes with Royal Icing, using a cake spatula or leave them uniced.  If you are icing the cakes, you will need a glass of water nearby that you can dip your spatula in if it is hardening on your spatula white you’re icing.
  15. Decorate the cake as you desire.
  16. Once the icing has hardened, you can wrap it in foil and store until the day of the celebration.

Here's the video on how to do it!

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