Not many people know this, but this classic-as-it-gets bagful of nostalgia also goes by the name, Jan-in-die-sak. I mean, how could I not? If you’ve never heard of it, the doekpoeding is very similar to a fruit cake, but not as involved. It does boast an ingredients list the length of a short train, though, but it’s worth every rich mouthful of sugar and spice!


Prep time: 40 minutes | Cooking time: 2 hours | Serves: 8 


for the doekpoeding

300 g Safari cake mix  

150 g Safari fruit mince 

1 orange, zest  

2 preserved orange slices, finely chopped  

150 g dates, finely chopped   

30 ml brandy  

30 g breadcrumbs 

125 ml milk, full cream  

211 g (370 ml) cake flour 

7 ml baking powder  

5 ml cinnamon, ground 

2 ml nutmeg, ground 

1,25 ml salt, fine 

20 g dark chocolate, roughly chopped 

115 g (120 ml) salted butter, cubed 

5 ml bicarbonate of soda  

25 ml milk, full cream 

3 eggs, large 

100 g (125 ml) light brown sugar 

20 ml apricot jam, smooth  

Extra flour for dusting  

for the coffee custard

250 ml milk, full cream  

250 ml cream  

1 shot of espresso  

6 egg yolks  

70 g (90 ml) granulated sugar 


for the doekpoeding

To prepare the steamed fruitcake, start by combining all the fruits in a medium bowl and pouring the brandy over them. Let the fruit soak for about 30 minutes. In the meantime, fill a large saucepan halfway with water and bring it to a boil. 

Next, soak the bread crumbs in 125 ml of milk, and in a separate bowl, sift the flour, baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt together. Add in the dark chocolate and rub the butter into the flour mixture. 

In another small bowl, dissolve the bicarbonate of soda in 25 ml of milk. Using a stand-up mixer on high speed, cream the eggs until they become light and fluffy, gradually adding the brown sugar. Reduce the mixer speed and slowly incorporate the bicarbonate of soda mixture. 

Now, combine the bread crumb mixture with the flour mixture until well combined. Start folding the egg mixture into the flour mixture until everything is thoroughly incorporated. Stir in the apricot jam. 

Prepare a muslin cloth by wetting it under running water and wringing out any excess water. Place the damp cloth on a working surface and dust it with cake flour, discarding any excess flour that doesn’t stick. Place the cloth in a bowl and pour the cake mixture into it. 

Tie the ends of the cloth together, leaving enough space for the cake to rise. Carefully place the bowl with the cake mixture in the pot of boiling water, ensuring no water overflows into the bowl. 


Over medium heat and with the lid closed, allow the cake to steam for 2 hours. It’s essential not to lift the pot lid within the first hour of steaming. After the first hour, check the water level in the pot to ensure there’s enough water for continued steaming. 

Once the two hours are up, remove the steamed fruitcake from the pot and allow to cool. 

for the coffee custard

In a medium saucepan, heat the milk, cream and espresso until it starts to simmer over a low heat. Whisk together the eggs and sugar until light and fluffy and slowly add the warm liquid to the creamed eggs, whisking continuously. 

Place the mixture back over a medium heat, while whisking until the custard is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.    

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