This has come from my imagination – how to create a dessert for Christmas that combines traditional Christmas flavours with ice cream.

For our Australian Christmas we need something cold and refreshing – I remember as a child forcing myself to eat hot Christmas puddings just so I could get the sixpences that were embedded in them. Fortunately my tastes have changed and I now actually like rich fruit cakes and puddings but I still don’t think that they belong on hot summer days following a long, leisurely, over-indulgent seafood and ham based Christmas lunch.

This Christmas the desert will be a layered ice cream cake with vanilla ice cream, chopped up rich fruit cake, brandy / kahlua soaked fruit, spiced nuts, chocolate chips and lastly another layer of vanilla ice cream with scotch.


  • 1 dark fruit cake (buy pre-made to make it easy), cut into cubes, semi frozen to make it easier to cut, and returned to the freezer to keep it cool
  • 2 cups spiced nuts
  • 2 cups of assorted chopped dried fruit – dates, apricots, sultanas, soaked overnight in any alcohol – rum, brandy, kahlua, irish cream 0r a combination that tastes good (tasting is essential) – cool in the freezer once soaked. My dates broke down and made a lovely syrupy mix.
  • 2 bags or choc chips – I used white and dark – store in freezer
  • 4 litres of ice cream made as needed
    • 2 litres of brandy flavoured vanilla ice cream for the top
    • 2 litres vanilla ice cream for the base


Prepare a large flat container that takes a lid, line it neatly with plastic wrap (spray a little water on the container to help keep the plastic in place) then put a layer of baking paper on the bottom, bringing it up the ends and sides, depending on the width of the container. This helps to hide the wrinkles on the plastic. Put the container in the freezer to cool.

Have all the ingredients prepared and cold before making the ice cream.

Woolworths Dark Fruit Cake

Woolworths Dark Fruit Cake


Soaking fruit

Soaking fruit – get it quite cold

Churn the first batch of ice cream and spread it into the cold container. Put it into the freezer until it has almost set.

Add the layers (if it is a hot day work quickly and return to the freezer between layers to stop the ice cream melting):

  1. push in the fruit cake pieces
  2. spread with the soaked fruit
  3. spread the nuts
  4. layer the choc chips
Ice cream and fruit cake

Ice cream and fruit cake


Nut layer, before chocolate chips and final cie cream layer

Nut layer, before chocolate chips and final ice cream layer

The chocolate chip layer

The chocolate chip layer

Return the dish to the freezer.

Make the final ice cream layer – I used my freshly made vanilla extract, still quite strongly flavoured with brandy, otherwise vanilla extract and brandy or whisky added in the final churn.

Spread evenly over the chocolate layer, cover and return to the freezer.

Finally decorate with drizzled chocolate.

An hour before serving move it from the freezer to the fridge so it is possible to cut.

Serve with a scoop of brandy custard ice cream and a pile of spiced seasonal fruit such as peaches and mangoes.







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