Fruitcake has a bit of a reputation. I’m not entirely sure why people have a mostly hate, not even love hate, relationship with it. It’s dried fruit (and a few nuts) folded into cake and soaked with brandy before being finished with a brushing of jam.
Dried fruit. Cake. Brandy. Jam.
Um, when did we decide we hate all those things and would rather make fruitcake the basis for about half the holiday jokes out there? What did fruitcake ever do to us?
Just like any other dessert, there can be bad versions. We’ve all had dry cake or cakey brownies or crumbly cookies. We’ve had burnt things and raw things and pushed aside a treat that looks awesome but is too sweet or not sweet enough. So many things can go wrong with a baked good. And fruitcake is no different.
But I have had good fruitcake over the years. I’m looking at you Collin Street Bakery. I know there are others out there, but I wanted to make my own version, totally unsure if after all the work and all the cups of dried fruit I would even like it.
That’s never stopped my from trying something different before, so I got to work and baked off the cake filled with brandy soaked fruit, before brushing it with brandy a couple more times over a week, and finishing it with peach jam.
I have never waited so long before to see if one of my creations so much as turned out, but part of what makes fruitcake so tasty (when it is tasty) is plain old time. With a mixture of anticipation and concern I took a bite and instantly fell in love.
This fruitcake is everything we all want fruitcake to be. It’s sweet, but not too sweet, chewy but not tough, spiced but subtly so, boozy but just enough to give that tingle in the back of your throat. This is the fruitcake of my dreams and I have a feeling yours too.
Here’s to all the classic holiday vibes with sugar, spice, and everything nice 🙂Print
Forget about fruitcake of the past. This one is loaded with chewy, yet tender fruit, soaked with brandy (three times!), and brushed with jam for an irresistible Christmas treat.
6 cups diced mixed dried fruit – I used tart cherries, raisins, prunes, mango, and dates
1 ½ cups chopped walnuts
2 cups brandy
½ cup coconut oil, room temperature
½ cup coconut sugar
3 large eggs
1 ½ cups paleo flour blend (2 cups almond flour, 1 ¼ cups tapioca flour, ¾ cup coconut flour)
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
2 teaspoons ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cloves
½ teaspoon ground cardamom
2 teaspoons vanilla bean powder
½ cup apricot or peach jam
2 tablespoons water
Place the fruit and walnuts in a large bowl and cover with 1 ¼ cups brandy. Stir, cover with plastic, and store in a dark place at room temperature for about 24 hours, stirring now and then.
Make the fruitcake. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F, 275 degrees F convection. Oil muffin tins, loaf pans, or the baking vessel of your choice.
In a large bowl, beat the coconut oil and sugar until combined and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time. Stir in the flour, salt, cinnamon, ginger, cloves, cardamom, and vanilla until combined. Add the fruit and any liquid and fold into the flour mixture until well combined. Spoon into baking vessels.
Bake muffins tins about 30 minutes and loaf pans about 60 minutes, until set and golden brown. Immediately after removing from the oven, brush with brandy. Cool completely in pans.
After 4 days, remove from pans carefully and brush all sides with brandy. Or just given them a good dunk 😉 After 3 more days, heat jam in a microwave safe bowl with the water until thinned. Brush cakes with jam and allow to set at least one hour.
Fruitcake may be stored an additional week at room temperature or frozen, wrapped in parchment and foil and placed in a zipper bag for up to 3 months. Thaw at room temperature a couple hour or in the microwave about 1 minute.
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 1 hour