Preheat oven to 140 °C and grease two 30 cm cake tins with margarine or butter.
Line with a double layer of baking paper and grease once more.
Sift dry ingredients together.
Add the sugar and rub in the butter with your fingertips.
Add the fruit and jam, mixing with your hands.
Whisk together the eggs and 50 ml brandy and add.
Stir until well blended.
Turn the batter into the tins, cover and place each tin in a cardboard box (see end of recipe).
Bake for four hours or until the cakes are done (a testing skewer inserted into the centre of the cakes should come out clean).
Pour 125 ml sherry or brandy over each cake as soon as they come out of the oven and leave them to cool in the tins.
Wrap in aluminium foil and store.
Decorate with diced ginger preserve.
Baking in a cardboard box
Choose a hard cardboard box large enough to hold the cake tin and cover the box with three layers of brown paper. Cover the tin and the unbaked cake mixture with a thick piece of aluminium foil or a double layer of brown paper and place in the box. Place the box in the oven and bake as described in the recipe.
Note: this method is suitable only for electric ovens.