We have $162,395 to go in our Fall Campaign. Every penny is used to strengthen the Church. See details!
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Catholic Recipe: Irish Porter Cake


  • 8 oz or 1 cup butter
  • 8 oz or 1 cup plus 2 Tablespoons brown sugar or golden bakers' sugar
  • 1/2 pint or 1 1/4 cups stout, Guinness or Murphy
  • zest of 1 orange
  • 8 oz or 1 cup sultanas or golden raisins
  • 8 oz or 1 cups raisins
  • 4 oz or 1/2 cup mixed peel
  • 1 lb or 4 cups unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons mixed spice
  • 4 oz or 1/2 cup glacé cherries, halved
  • 3 eggs
  • Details

  • Yield: 1 9-inch cake
  • Prep Time: 3 hours
  • Difficulty: • • •
  • Cost: $$$$
  • For Ages: 15+
  • Origin: Ireland

This recipe is from the famed Darina Allen.

This fruit cake is made with the famous black stout of Ireland. Its distinctive flavour makes it a great favorite—so much so that it is even exported in tins to Irish emigrants in the United States. This cake is suitable for St. Patrick's Day, but then leftovers can be saved until after Easter.


Preheat oven to 350ºF.

Melt the butter and the sugar in a saucepan with the stout. Add the orange zest and all the fruit except the cherries. Bring to a boil and boil for 3-4 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from heat and allow to cool until lukewarm.

Sieve the flour, soda and spice into a mixing bowl. Add the fruit mixture to the flour and then add the cherries. Whisk the eggs and add gradually, mixing well.

Spoon the mixture into a greased and floured 9 inch round pan and bake in the middle of a preheated 350ºF oven for about 1 1/2 hours.

If you wish you may pour 4 tablespoons of stout over the cake when it is cooked (prick the cake with a skewer first). Keep for 1 to 4 days before cutting. This cake will keep well for several weeks in a tin.

Recipe Source: Festive Food of Ireland, The by Darina Allen, Kyle Cathie Limited, 1992
Fall Campaign
Subscribe for free
Shop Amazon
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Free eBook: Pope Francis' Catechesis on the Family 18 hours ago
The headlines say Gov. Brown is Catholic. He says he's not sure what that means. 19 hours ago
Archbishop predicts Synod won't change Church teaching. Why am I not reassured? 20 hours ago
A different tone at this Synod? October 6
Church Fathers: St. Clement of Alexandria, Part I October 6

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
Pope issues new rules to streamline annulment process CWN - September 8
In Cuba, Pope emphasizes service to the vulnerable, praises thaw in US-Cuban relations CWN - September 21
Pope challenges America in speech to US Congress CWN - September 24
As Synod opens, Pope calls on Church to defend ‘unity and indissolubility’ of marriage bond CWN - October 5