It’s never too early to bake a fruitcake.  The beauty of them is they get better as they age – and soak up the liquor that is poured onto them.

I must admit that I really do like fruitcake.  I even like the store-bought ones, although the odds of me ever eating one of them with their chemicals and artificial ingredients are between slim and none.  Low as they may be, I have my standards!

So…  I looked at my 2010 recipe and decided it would be easy to update for 2012.  And from the scents wafting through the house, it came out great!

I didn’t use any candied fruit this year.  I thought about making some candied orange or lemon peel and then decided it really wasn’t worth it.  I went for all dried fruit – soaked in amaretto!  As I said, it smells really good!

2012 Fruitcake

  • 8 cups assorted dried fruits (I used golden raisins, raisins, currants, apricots, blueberries, cherries, strawberries, dates, and figs.)
  • 3/4 cup amaretto
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup wholoe wheat flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1/2 tsp cloves
  • 1 cup butter, softened
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1 cup almond meal
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped assorted nuts (I used walnuts and pistachios)
  • 1/4 cup orange marmalade mixed with 1 tbsp amaretto)

In a large bowl combine all of the fruits with the amaretto and let macerate overnight.

Line the bottom of a well-buttered 9 1/2-inch springform pan with a round of parchment paper and butter the paper. Into a small bowl sift together the flour, the baking powder, and the spices.

Cream together the butter and the brown sugar until the mixture is light and fluffy and beat in 4 of the eggs, 1 at a time, beating well after each addition.

Drain the fruit mixture in a sieve set over the batter and beat the juices into the batter.

Stir the flour mixture into the batter, one fourth at a time, stir in the fruit mixture, the almond meal, and the nuts, stirring until the mixture is just combined, and turn the batter out into the prepared pan.

Put 2 loaf pans, each filled with hot water, in a preheated 300°F. oven and put the springform pan between them. Bake the cake for 1 hour, brush the top with the remaining egg, beaten lightly, and bake the cake for 1 hour more. While the cake is baking, in a saucepan melt the marmalade with the remaining 1 tablespoon amaretto over moderate heat, bring the mixture to a boil, and strain it through a fine sieve into a bowl, pressing hard on the solids.

Cool cake in the pan on a rack for 30 minutes.  Remove from pan. Brush the top of the cake with glaze.

The cake will keep, covered, for 6 months.

It will be going down to the basement where it will get a weekly dousing of amaretto until Christmas!

I’ll be sure to let you know just how good it was!