I do a lot of baking and have recently been making Christmas Cakes to give out as presents in the festive season. These rich fruit cakes can be rather expensive to make due to the large amount of ingredients they use especially dried fruit so to cut down on cost I opted this year to buy mixed fruit and made one with the Asda smart price dried mixed fruit.
This dried mixed fruit can only be purchased in Asda as it is an own brand product and is currently priced at £0.95 for a 500g bag.
The packaging of this dried fruit is a basic plastic bag but does the job it is required too keeping the fruit sealed and fresh. The mix of fruit is made up of sultanas, currants, raisins and mixed peel.
As stated I have used this mixed fruit recently in my Christmas cakes which have turned out perfectly and it saved me having to purchase all of the different fruits separately which not only cuts down on cost but also on time having to weigh out the correct amounts of each. You do not get uniformed sized sultanas like with more expensive brands but to me the fruit appeared to be excellent quality and not a bag half filled with mixed peel which can happen with some cheaper brands.
Although I used this mixed fruit in my Christmas cake it can be used for other fruit cakes or bakes, can be eaten on its own as a snack or added to oats to make a homemade muesli or added to porridge or yogurt.
Overall this is a great alternative to the more expensive branded dried mixed fruit and works just as well. I would certainly purchase and use this mixed fruit again and would recommend it especially for avid bakers as it can really cut down the cost of a fruit cake.
I have used Asda Smartprice Mixed Fruits on several occasions, mainly to add to museli or to make fruitcake, but at this time of year I use it to make the much waited for christmas pudding. I use Delia Smiths recipe and amend it a little bit to suit my family and I, but I have found that it really isn't worth spending loads of money on expensive dried fruit ingredients because dried fruit is dried fruit and it really does all seem to taste the same! A large 500g bag of Asda Smartprice Mixed Fruits costs just 64p - which, in my opinion, really is a fantastic bargain.
Within the fruit mix, there are sultanas, raisins, currants and mixed peel. It all goes together nicely to make a really good base for christmas pudding and fruit cake and it also seems to be in the right quantities with the composition being made up in size order as I have written it. It is true that the fruit is a little sticky when it's inside the plastic bag, but I've found this of many dried fruit packets and I really don't think this diminishes the quality of the sweet flavour or the pleasant texture. The fruit is a good size and plump and juicy - and I never find anything in there I'd rather not have, like stalks or pips.
One of the negative things about this product is the packaging because the packaging is not re-sealable and I feel it should be because it's unlikely you are going to use all of the contents in one bake-fest.
Overall, I recommend this product and really don't feel you should bother spending more.
I have recently been baking my Christmas cakes, one for myself and one for my daughter who doesnt care much for baking.
I find its getting more and more expensive every year to bake my own Christmas cakes, so I opt for the smart priced Asdas Mixed dried fruit. It comes in a 500gram bag, its a platic bag its suitable for vegetarians, you simply cut the top off with a pair of scissors to open and its ready to use.
I soak mine in a drop of brandy as thats how I enjoy my dried fruit in my Christmas cakes.
Ingredients : - dried vine fruit, mixed candied citrus fruit, sultanas, raisons, glucose syrup, citrus peel, lemon peel, orange peel, sugar preservatives.
This is my receipe for a quick Christmas cake.
40zs self raising flour.
40zs plain flour.
tablespoon of baking powder.
40zs brown sugar.
half bag mixed dried fruit.
40zs marg or butter.
nuts, i like to add walnuts to mine.
tablespoon syrup or malasses.
I usually double up the ingredients to make a large Christmas cak, and I like to add dates to mine to add that extra something special.
Bake for a few hours 180, test if cooked by sticking a skreewer into the cake and seeing if it comes out clear of cake mixture.
I find the Asda mixed dried fruit to contain tasty pieces of fruit and you get a good mixture in each bag.
Look out for their special deals of buy two get one free as this keeps for ages. This currently costs 65pence for a 500gram bag.
Thanks for reading and rating my reviews.
Asda Smartprice mixed fruit, it may not be the first choice but when it comes to value it has to be one of the most sensible. I love baking and I regularly bake my own cakes and biscuits and the Asda dried mixed fruit is as good as any other cut priced offering.
Asda have got the 500g bag of mixed dried fruit on the shelves for 65p. When I take some of the dried fruit out to use in a cake I often notice that the fruit needs to be separated. The fruit and peel are glazed and that glaze makes the contents of the bag feel slightly sticky.
Some do and some don't but I always weigh out my dried fruit, place it into the sieve and then rinse it well under the cold water tap. I know that Asda will have already given the fruit a wash over but I like to make doubly sure that it is clean. The Asda Smartprice mixed fruit is cheap and cheerful and you may prefer to pick it over before you add it to your cake mixture, sometimes there will be an odd bit of stalk that needs picking out.
Sultanas are our favourite and 44% of the 500g contents of the bag is made up of juicy sultanas, agreed they are not maybe as fat and juicy as the premium brands but they are very edible and enjoyable. Another 22% of the bag comprises of seedless raisins and then there are 22% currants. If you feel that the dried fruit looks a little crushed up then just pop it into some boiling hot water for a few seconds, which soon plumps it up.
Only 10% of the contents is mixed peel, I am fine with that because mixed peel is not one of my favourite things, in fact I will often remove some of the larger pieces of mixed peel. The bag of Asda Smartprice dried mixed fruit does contain preservatives. Once the bag has been opened then the remainder needs to be stored in a cool dry place where the fruit will safely keep for a good length of time.
100g of this Asda dried mixed fruit contains 283 calories and for every 100g there is 67.0g of sugar. If you were buying mixed fruit for a special occasion cake then you would head straight for the premium brands but if you are making scones, rock cakes, Welsh cakes or fruit buns then this dried mixed fruit is very good value.
I often make a bread and butter pudding and I use the Asda smartprice dried fruit but I do remove the pieces of mixed peel.
Maybe you have a family who love homemade cakes and biscuits, if that's the case then the Asda mixed fruit is an ideal buy for you and you have no need to feel guilty of you go a little bit overboard and add an extra handful of fruit !
The Tesco value dried mixed fruit is the same price but there is a slight difference in the listed ingredients, the mixture comprises of 39% raisins, 39% sultanas and the same amount of mixed peel. We both like currants so the Asda Smartprice mixed fruit suits our needs well.
If you bake regularly then this is definitely one to add to your shopping list.
Tis the season to be jolly fa la la la la. Yep folks its October which means the supermarket shelves are jam packed with advent calendars and Christmas crackers. The more organised amongst you will have made Christmas cakes way back in September to enable you to feed them on a weekly basis in order to cram as much alcohol as possible into them. In the case of my mums cakes thats a definate case of don't eat and drive. Not being quite so organised I'm only just beginning mine now.
I forget year on year just how expensive baking a Christmas cake actually is. I'm using Delia Smiths recipe which calls for 850g of dried mixed fruit per cake. This varies horrifically in price from store to store. My usual choice of Waitrose own brand 1kg dried mixed fruit costs £2.67 whereas the smaller 500g Asda Smart Price version is a mere 65p making it £1.30 per kg or more than half the price of the Waitrose equivalent.
The biggest surprise is the ASDA variant is more fruity containing a whole 1% more fruit than the Waitrose version. The fruit distribution is far more heavily weighted towards Sultanas in the ASDA variant with fewer currants but at the end of the day they're all dried grapes of one sort or another. Visually comparing the packs the difference really isn't noticable. On washing the water is just as cloudy, if anything the ASDA variant rinses cleaner a little faster.
As always the proof of the pudding is in the eating and whilst it will be Christmas Day before we cut into the cakes themselves I can happily report back that the uncooked cake mix was delicious and I really couldn't taste any difference.
Theres always a downside and in this case its the calories. The Waitrose fruit boasts a mere 1115kj whereas the ASDA fruit contains 1202kj per 100g. Still who ever heard of a healthy Christmas cake?