Fruit Cake - Recipe
Well it is that time of year again. The time to make the Christmas fruitcake! Fruitcake is a special cake we love to eat celebrating Christmas and New Years that my family has made as long as I can remember. This recipe is my version of the traditional family recipe that I have developed over the years. I use all natural dried fruits with no colored dies. Feel free to tweak and swap out dried fruit types as you see fit. It is the total volume that matters. Every year it is a little different!
Fruitcake - Recipe
6 oz. Green Seedless Raisins
6 oz. Red Seedless Raisins
12 oz. Dried Cranberries
12 oz. Medjool Dates pitted and chopped
4 oz. Dried Cherries
4 oz. Dried Apricots chopped
4 oz. Candied Ginger
1 tsp. Ground Cloves
2 tsp. Cinnamon
2 tsp. Nutmeg
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. Allspice
1 c. Cloudberry jam
1/3-1/2 c. Brandy
Brandy for Soaking Cheese Cloth
1 1/2 c. Butter room temperature
2 c. Sugar
1 T. Rum
7 Eggs beaten
5 c. All Purpose Flour
1 tsp. Salt
1 tsp. Baking Soda
Combine fruits in a large glass bowl or stainless steel mixing bowl or pasta pot. Whisk spices together and mix into fruit. Mix jam and brandy together and mix into fruit. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
Next day transfer fruit to a very large bowl and set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together in a mixing bowl. Add rum and beat well. Add eggs and beat till fluffy.
In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, and baking soda. Add half the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat till incorporated.
Remove the butter/flour mixture from mixer and add to fruit stirring till combined. Now add half of the remaining dry ingredients and stir. Then once again stir in the last of the dry ingredients. This will be a little stiff, so make sure you have a sturdy spoon. It helps to hold the spoon down by the head.
Preheat an oven to 250 degrees Fahrenheit.
Line a 10 inch tube pan with 2 layers of parchment. Grease the pan and each layer as you go. Cover the sides, bottom and center tube.
Lining the pan can be a bit tricky, so here are some helpful tips.
1) Grease pan. Don't forget the tube in the middle.
2) For the bottom: Trace the outer circles onto parchment with a pencil with pan sitting on parchment. Reach in center of tube and trace inner circle. Cut out, grease and place in the bottom of the pan greased side up.
3) Measure the circumference of the top part (widest part) of the pan and add 12 inches. Cut a length of parchment to this size. Cut into 4 equal pieces. Grease half of each sheet on the long edge, then fold lengthwise. Grease one side of the folded pieces. Place on the sides of the pan greased side out, trying to line up with the bottom of the pan as much as possible. If the pan sides are not straight up and down, you will need to overlap the pieces a bit to get complete coverage. Cutting the 4 pieces enables us to have the parchment lay flat against the sides.
4) Do the same process for the tube, except only 2 pieces are probably needed.
Fill the pan 3/4 high and bake for 3 hours and 30 minutes until the top is golden, slightly separating from the edge, and a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove from the oven and cool on a rack for 30 minutes. Unmold, remove parchment, and cool completely. This will take several hours. Cover in cheese cloth moistened with brandy and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate and baste cheese cloth lightly with brandy every 3-4 days for 6 weeks. Wrap in cheese cloth, plastic wrap, then foil and store in freezer. I also store all this in a plastic container for another layer of protection.
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