Chocolate fruit cake: Reduce plain flour to 2/3 cup and add 1/3 cup sifted cocoa. In step 3, stir in 100g grated dark chocolate with egg and flours. Continue as instructed.
Spiced fruit cake: In step 1, increase mixed spice to 2 teaspoons. Add 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger, 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice and 1 tablespoon orange zest. Continue as instructed.
Glacé fruit cake: In step 1, reduce water to 1/2 cup. Replace sultanas, raisins, dates and currants with 125g finely chopped glace orange slices, 125g finely chopped glacé pears, 125g finely chopped glace pineapple, 125g finely chopped glace apricots and 125g finely chopped glace ginger. Continue as instructed.
Egg-, milk- and nut-free fruit cake: In step 1, increase water to 1 cup. Omit eggs and nuts from recipe. Change flour ratios to 1/2 cup plain flour and 1 1/2 cups self-raising flour. Continue as instructed.
Gluten-free fruit cake: Replace plain and self-raising flours with gluten-free varieties. Continue as instructed.
Alcohol-free fruit cake: Replace brandy (or dark rum) with orange juice. Continue as instructed. Brush cake with orange juice before cooling.
Mini fruit cakes: Prepare batter as instructed. Divide mixture among 12 greased muffin tin holes. Decorate with nuts and bake at 130°C until a skewer or small knife inserted into the centre of one cake comes out clean (45–50min). Continue as instructed.
Time saver: For an easier version, replace all dried fruits with 4 cups (750g) mixed dried fruit.