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Wet Nelly

This local Liverpool favourite is a moister version of Nelson cake – a Lancashire fruit cake – hence the name Wet Nelly. Our delicious recipe for it has been a firm favourite at Speke Hall for many years.

  • 4 hours 15 minutes (including soaking time) prep. time
  • 1 hour 15 minutes cooking time
  • Serves 8
  • Cakes, bakes & desserts
Speke Hall's local delicacy, Wet Nelly
Have a go at making this famous Liverpudlian delicacy | © Alexandra Muir


  • Loaf of white bread (day-old bread is fine)
  • 100g butter 
  • 140g brown sugar
  • 3/4 litre warm milk
  • 2 tsp mixed spice
  • 3 medium eggs
  • 500g mixed fruit 


Step 1

Cut the crusts off the bread and slice into chunky squares. Soak bread in milk for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Step 2

When fully soaked, add all other ingredients, mix together well and pour into a greased deep-sided roasting tin.

Step 3

Bake at 180°C (160°C fan/gas mark 4) for approximately 1 hour–1 hour 15 minutes, until soft but springy to touch.

Step 4

Serve hot with custard or cold with a cup of tea.

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