Two weeks ago I made fruitcake; I started with this fruitcake recipe and adjusted it to what I had on hand. I used a loaf pan 9 x 5 x 2 1/2 inches. In retrospect, I wish I’d used a tube pan, because I can’t find a cake tin that will accommodate a loaf. The finished cake is wrapped in wax paper, plastic wrap, foil, and a ziplock bag. It’ll be ready to eat after Thanksgiving.
Here’s my recipe:
- 2 cups candied fruit (orange and lemon peel, cherries, pineapple, citron)
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1 cup dried cherries (one 5 oz. packet)
- 1 1/3 cup calimyrna figs (one 8 oz. packet)
- 1/2 cup brandy
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 Tbsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp ground cloves
- 1/2 tsp ground allspice
- 2 eggs
- 3/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1/8 cup molasses
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 3/4 cup pecan halves
- 1/4 cup slivered almonds
- Snip the figs into pieces, discarding the stems. Combine all the fruit in a bowl. Pour the brandy over the fruit. Let it soak for five hours, stirring every half hour.
- Preheat the oven to 300F. Prepare the pan by greasing the bottom and sides and lining the bottom and sides with greased parchment paper.
- In a very large bowl, mix the flour, spices, baking powder, and salt. Stir until it’s evenly blended.
- In another bowl beat the eggs until they’re fluffy. Add the brown sugar, orange juice, molasses, and butter. Stir until all the sugar is dissolved.
- Add the fruit and nuts to the flour mixture. Stir until all the fruit pieces are coated. Then pour in the egg mixture and stir gently until the batter is evenly mixed.
- Pour the batter into the pan and bake it at 300F for one hour. Cover the pan with foil and bake it for one more hour (for a total of two hours) until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool the cake for 1/2 hour on a wire rack, then remove it from the pan. Peel off the paper carefully.
- Keep the cake in the refrigerator. Store it in a foil-lined cake tin, or wrapped and bagged securely. For 3 or 4 weeks, sprinkle 2 Tbsp brandy over the cake once a week.
Serve in thin slices, only to people who like fruitcake.
UPDATE: The Taste Test, 24 Nov 04
There wasn’t room in the icebox for both the turkey and the fruitcake. I opened, unpacked, and unwrapped the cake, and let it come to room temperature. It’s not bad, but not outstanding. The spice flavor is too strong, especially the cloves. Next time I’ll cut the total spice amount in half. The figs taste fine, but their tiny seeds make a less-than-attractive presentation. Dates might go better. And finally, there’s too much fruit in proportion to the cake. I believe I’ll replace the figs with half the volume of dates, and increase the cake part proportionally. I’ll update this recipe when I actually make it.
Meanwhile, the fruitcake is out on the table, because two pies and a cheese cake just aren’t enough.