1. Place the raisins, dried apricots, mixed peel, Glace cherries, dates and apple juice in a large pan and heat over the hob on a medium heat.
2. Stir to coat all the fruit in liquid. Cover then set aside overnight to soak.
3. The next day, preheat oven to 160C.
4. Line a STAUB 22cm round cast iron Cocotte with baking paper on the bottom and around the sides.
5. With an electric whisk, whisk the butter and sugar until smooth and creamy.
6. Add the vegetable oil and golden syrup, and whisk again until combined.
7. Add salt, ground ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg and baking powder and stir until all combined.
8. Add eggs, one at a time, and whisk again.
9. Next stir in the flour.
10. When the flour is incorporated add the fruit mixture including the remaining apple juice in the bowl, and stir well.
11. Then add the chopped walnuts and stir until evenly distributed.
12. Pour into the STAUB Cocotte, cover with foil and bake for 3 hours and 15 minutes.
13. Open the oven, remove the foil and bake for a further 45 minutes, until a skewer inserted into middle comes out clean.
14. Meanwhile roll out the marzipan and use star cutters to cut out shapes for the top of the cake.
14. Remove the Christmas cake from the oven and leave to cool for 20 minutes in the Cocotte before transferring to cooling rack.
15. Leave to cool completely before decorating with marzipan stars and a dusting of icing sugar.